Builders seek to overturn planning guidelines for large apartments

Builders and real estate agents have pressured Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council to reverse new planning guidelines, opposing measures to increase the number of larger apartments in the southern suburbs of Dublin.

Objections center on requirements for three-bedroom housing in 40% of units in large apartment buildings in “new communities” such as Cherrywood, the largest undeveloped land reserve in the council area.

Similar rules for rental apartments have also encountered resistance, with builders claiming institutional investments will be damaged at a crucial time.

A sign of tension in the market as the council finalizes its 2022-2028 development plan, a major developer wants exemptions to the 40% requirement that is supposed to apply to projects with more than 50 apartments.

Quintain, who plans thousands of Cherrywood homes, called for a moratorium on projects well advanced and those sent to planners before councilors adopt the development plan in March.

“Significant delay”

“Otherwise, considerable cost and time will be incurred in reviewing and adjusting the affected projects to comply with the new requirements of the plan, which will inevitably result in a significant delay in the delivery of much needed housing.” ”

In a submission posted on the council’s website, the company insisted there was only “limited demand” for three-bed apartments and said it had already made a financial expenditure. important to move projects forward.

To support his argument, Quintain sent separate documents from estate agents Knight Frank and Savills Ireland.

Knight Frank said the 40% requirement should not be adopted, adding that demand trends favor smaller units: “Introducing this requirement may delay project delivery as projects are reassessed and, at worst, make certain high density developments unsustainable ”.

Savills said the market demand for homes with more than two bedrooms was “a lot” focused on houses rather than apartments located in the suburbs. “We have seen a further increase in this trend over the last year as families increasingly look to buy or rent residential units with private outdoor space (i.e. garden )”, did he declare.

“Build to rent”

Cairn Homes, another builder, said the rationale for setting a minimum percentage of three-bedroom units in rental building programs was not supported by the council’s own market analysis.

“The rental construction model is key to filling the housing shortage. If a new stock is not built, prices and rents go up. Lack of supply will have a negative impact on society as a whole through increased rental costs, urban sprawl, etc.

Cairn also said some parking standards should be changed to “maximum numbers” to encourage reduced parking supply and the use of private cars, for climatic reasons.

Glenveagh Properties said the requirement for “certain percentages of three-bed units in residential projects, in this case 40%, is not considered commercially viable” given current market trends.

Glenveagh also opposed the council’s proposal for external storage requirements for apartments, saying it would “place an undue burden” on developments and appear to exceed the Housing Department’s requirements.

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