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Dublin: 4 °C Thursday 9 April, 2020

An Taisce appeals to block new 8-storey Dublin hotel behind Four Courts

River House, which has been called “a scourge in the local area”, is set to be demolished to make way for the hotel.

River House is set to be demolished and transformed into an eight-storey hotel.
River House is set to be demolished and transformed into an eight-storey hotel.
Image: Leah Farrell/

AN TAISCE HAS lodged an appeal with An Bord Pleanála against a decision by Dublin City Council to grant permission for an eight-storey hotel behind the Four Courts.

The old motor tax building at River House on Chancery Street in the capital has been empty for over a decade and planning had been sought to demolish it and build a new hotel.

The site was bought for €8 million last year. It is proposed to build a hotel which will consist of 249 rooms and an independent café/restaurant on the ground level. There will also be gym and meeting room facilities planned for the site.

At the time that the original plans were submitted, Dublin city councillor Ray McAdam told that there is “every chance for it” going ahead and that he will work with locals who have reservations over its construction.

He said: “In terms of the proposal, I welcome it. I really do.

From a local point of view, it has been a scourge, whether you’re talking about looking at it or otherwise. It has been a source of a lot of anti-social behaviour and criminality.

A planning report submitted on behalf of the developer noted that the existing building “is of poor quality … and is considered to be of little or no architectural merit”.

It added that the hotel would help address the serious shortage of visitor accommodation in the city, which tourism officials have said is stifling the industry’s growth across the capital.

An architect’s report added that the hotel would form a ”respectful backdrop” to the Four Courts.

An Taisce, however, disagrees. It said that permission was granted in 2011 for a five to six-storey office redevelopment by An Bord Pleanála which runs until 2021.

It said that the current eight-storey hotel proposal represents a “significant increase in scale and impact”.

An Taisce added that its appeal “had raised particular concern on the views of the Four Courts from Christchurch and Winetavern Street from across the river, and the appropriate building height levels applied in other planning decisions in the area”.

With reporting from Garreth MacNamee and Killian Woods.

Read: Dublin could get new eight-storey hotel as vacant “scourge” set to be demolished

Read: A major hotel due to replace a ‘scourge’ of Dublin’s north side has been branded ‘monolithic’

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Sean Murray

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