Costello urges rejection of co-living units in Broadstone/Phibsborough
29 January 2020
Cllr Joe Costello has slammed the application for 121 co-living units in Broadstone and has called on the planners to reject out of hand this proposal.
Speaking in support of the local residents, Cllr Costello stated that while the development of the site which has been derelict for many years is long overdue, a co-living scheme of 121 units at this location is completely inappropriate and would be a very unwelcome development in the area. Cllr Costello stated “a development of houses for families would be much more appropriate to this site. There is a residential housing and homeless crisis. Whatever housing is built on the site should be mainly or exclusively for the young families in the City who cannot afford a home of their own or who are paying exorbitant prices for rented accommodation and are desperately seeking a new home to buy. 121 co-living units on this site constitutes over-development of the site.
Cllr Costello added that 121 co-living units will lead to a large transient population in the area and contributes nothing to the development of a vibrant urban community of Broadstone/Phibsborough. The Dublin 7 area has had a huge influx of student accommodation in recent years with over 8,000 units planned in close proximity to this development. While there is a requirement for developers of student accommodation to show the number of units being planned within a 1KM radius, there is not a similar onus on the co-living developers. Nevertheless, the high proportion of student accommodation in the area needs to be considered in the context of this application. Such a co-living development would set a very unwelcome precedent for planning in the area. Cllr Costello also highlighted his concerns that the development could become a short-term letting hub for AirBnB or similar platforms.
Cllr Costello pointed out that the development is adjacent to a protected structure and a number of houses along Mountjoy Street are also protected structures. The proposal for a co-living development would impact negatively on these protected structures and fall short of the standards required for development adjacent to protected structures outlined in the Development Plan. A five-storey development at this site would be out of kilter with the two-storey low-density residential character of the area.
He also outlined his concerns at the poor quality of the accommodation for future residents of the development including the large number of units per floor with shared kitchens between 14 to 17 units and the small size of the communal lounges which could only accommodate a small number of residents at any one time.
Cllr Costello concluded by urging the planners to refuse permission on the grounds that it would be injurious to the residential amenity of the existing residents of Mountjoy Street/St Mary’s Avenue and the future residents of the development and that it constitutes over-development of the site. He requested them to seek a development that would be more in keeping with the established residential neighbourhood of Broadstone/Phibsborough.