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Gannon unveils plans for 1,537 Dublin apartments

One of the country’s best- known builders during the building boom and bust, Gerry Gannon, has unveiled his most ambitious plans yet since returning to large-scale house building.

This follows Mr Gannon’s Gerald Gannon Properties submitting documentation to An Bord Pleanála concerning more than 1,500 apartments at Clongriffin in Dublin 13.

In response to the record sums being paid for rent in the capital, two separate appeals board notices concerning the Gannon plan confirm the vast majority of the 1,537 apartments are to be for the rental market.

The details disclosed by An Bord Pleanála show that 1,324 units are for the ‘build to rent’ market and there are an additional 213 residential units.

The documentation is part of a pre-planning consultation by Mr Gannon with the appeals board and comes under the new regime of Government fast-track planning aimed at easing the housing crisis.

The new Strategic Housing Development Rules allow builders to bypass local authorities and have their applications adjudicated by An Bord Pleanála.

The planning documentation lodged by the building firm starts a nine-week long pre-planning consultation with An Bord Pleanála.

The consultation will involve Dublin City Council planners and at the end of the consultation, An Bord Pleanála will provide an ‘opinion’ on the development.

It is then open to Gannon Properties to take into account the views expressed by An Bord Pleanála before lodging an application direct to An Bord Pleanála in 2019 under the recently-introduced Government planning rules.

The new rules can save a year or more in the time required to have large-scale planning applications decided by local authorities.

The proposed 1,537 is far larger than any strategic application the appeals board is currently evaluating, where the largest plan totals 251 residential units for Grange, Co Cork. Even before serving notice of the large-scale apartment plans, Mr Gannon’s firm has stepped up housing production in order to meet the soaring demand for homes in the capital.

The most-recently filed accounts for the company show that pre-tax profits increased by 41pc to €6.19m as revenues climbed to €34.8m in 2017. As a result of the legacy from the building bust, the company’s accumulated losses stood at €115m last year, down from €121.3m a year earlier.

A note attached to the accounts states that the directors are confident that Nama will continue to provide financial support to the company for the foreseeable future and it will continue to work with Nama. The note states: “With this support, they are satisfied that the company can continue to manage its business and pay its liabilities as they fall due.”

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