An Bord Pleanála has upheld the council’s decision that the change of use of the Carmelite Monastery in Firhouse, to a homeless hub for families is an exempted development.

Last January, Brian Lawlor, Fine Gael councillor for Firhouse-Bohernabreena, lodged an appeal with ABP against the council’s decision to deem the change of use of the property as an exempted development.

At the time he told Dublin Gazette: “The reason I lodged the query is because it is my belief that the building is not okay to house families. I’ve been in it, it is not suitable, it consists of single room dorms, there’s no changing facilities for children and no play facility.”

Respond Housing Association, who are leasing the building, have been using it since December last year for accommodating families on the housing list.

If a development is deemed exempted, planning permission is not required for the proposed change of use of the development.