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Carrigstown on the move as RTÉ lodges plan for new Fair City site

The report states that the proposal “will not visually impact upon the existing properties in a significant way”.

Image: RTÉ

THE FICTIONAL NORTH Dublin suburb of Carrigstown is on the move.

This follows RTÉ lodging a planning application with Dublin City Council for the relocation of its entire Fair City lot on the RTÉ campus.

The relocation of the Fair City lot arises from RTÉ selling off 8.64 acres of land for housing at its Donnybrook HQ with property sources estimating that RTÉ could realise €90 million from the sale.

The current Fair City lot occupies part of the 8.64 acres of land on the market and planning documents lodged reveal that RTÉ is going to relocate the Fair City lot to the northern portion of its campus and lands sharing a boundary with homes on Nutley Road.

The Fair City lot comprises of 11 separate sets and the planning application provides for a new home for ‘McCoy’s pub’, the ‘Hungry Pig’, the ‘Dolphin Pod’, the Community Centre, the ‘Helping Hand’ charity shop and the other locations where the hit soap is shot.

Details of the plans

The height of the new set will range from 20 ft high to 27.75 ft high which the planning report states is consistent with prevailing heights of adjacent homes located on Nutley Road.

The rear elevations of the set will be located between 50 ft and 91 ft from the homes along Nutley Road.

The comprehensive report lodged by planning expert, John Spain Associates points out that Fair City has increased its viewership year on year and is central to RTÉ’s production schedule into the foreseeable future.

The report states:

The continued production of Fair City is considerably important to RTÉ’s production. As such, the continued production on site is an important factor in RTÉ’s operations.

The report states relocating the Fair City lot off the RTÉ campus “would lead to increases in direct and indirect staffing, longer transit times and increased costs and less efficient shooting schedules”.

Explaining why a campus site was chosen, the report states that “the ability to integrate the external scene shooting within the existing studios and other facilities of the RTÉ campus is critical”.

The report states that shooting of what is Ireland’s longest running and most popular soap opera takes place from 8am to 6pm from Monday to Friday with extended hours up to 10pm two night a week.

The planning report states that the chosen location on the RTÉ campus “is the only suitable location with an appropriate noise environment”.

A site near the Stillorgan Road end of the campus was the only other site considered and this was ruled out due to noise from traffic, the Donnybrook mast and the RTÉ crèche.

The planners state that the Nutley Road site “is the most efficient use of space in what has become a smaller campus.

In this location, it does not interfere with other operations on the campus… and has a noise environment to facilitate the very quiet ambient conditions required for shooting.

The development of the lot will take mean the loss an RTÉ staff car park that currently has space for 87 cars.

Spain states that “the design of the proposed set has undergone extensive design considerations to minimise the impact on the adjoining properties on Nutley Road”.

Spain adds that the final design is of the highest quality and has regard to the level of amenity in adjoining properties.

The report states that the proposed landscaping of the site “has been designed to ensure that the residential amenity of the properties located along Nutley Road are not adversely impacted by the proposed development”.

The report states that the proposed landscaping “will not visually impact upon the existing properties in a significant way”.

A decision is due on the application in July.

Read: Ireland’s biggest movie studio is up for sale, but developers won’t be allowed build houses there

Read: Complaint of ‘derogatory’ language used by Fianna Fáil leader against journalist rejected

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Gordon Deegan

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