Thursday, 5 February 2009

Victory for Greenhills and Greenpark!

I am delighted to post that the appeal to An Bord Pleanála regarding the landgrab at St Mel's and Glendoo Close has been rejected tonight.

You can read my blog posts about it from last year here and here . I have worked with local residents in both estates to ensure this was warded off along with my colleagues Pat Rabbitte and Eamonn Walsh.

Tonight's victory did not seem possible a year ago but the work by residents, particularly in terms of research into the legalities around ownership, as well as their submissions opposing the development, has truly paid off. See my press release below for more info.


Looney Welcomes "Huge Victory" for Greenhills and Greenpark Residents

Dermot Looney, Labour's Greenhills-based candidate in June's local elections, has congratulated local residents on a hard-fought victory with the rejection by An Bord Pleanála of a speculative development between St Mel's Avenue in Greenhills and Glendoo Close in Greenpark. Looney, along with local Labour colleagues Cllr Eamonn Walsh and Pat Rabbitte TD, had campaigned to ensure the site was retained as green space for local residents.

The application by Lansdowne Francs Properties to build six houses on the green space, which involved a controversial deal with South Dublin County Council to pay a reputed €250,000 to the Parks Department in return for the land, had originally been made in December 2007. The Council decided in May 2008 to seek additional information but, on foot of massive local objections and a series of legal and ownership matters, rejected the application in June 2008. The developer lodged an appeal to An Bord Pleanála, which itself was delayed on two occasions due to a backlog of work in the appeals board, but was finally decided on February 3rd.

"I am absolutely delighted for the residents who worked hard in the face of enormous odds to oppose and campaign against this land grab," said Looney. "Simpy put, this is a huge victory for Greenhills, Greenpark and ourselves in Labour who campaigned vigorously against this speculative development. An Bord Pleanála's decision is the correct one and I sincerely hope that this is the end of the matter."

"Greenhills and Greenpark have been the subject of similar speculative developments before. An attempt to grab land between St Peter's Road and St James' Road was met by a phenomenal campaign by local people who have now built an inspirational community garden at the site. A further attempt last summer by a separate developer on Keadeen Avenue in Greenpark to build on land beside the Greenhills Road was warded off by a campaign I organised with local residents. This latest successful effort by residents to protect their green space should be the nail and coffin for any further speculators seeking a quick buck in our area."