A €5M proposed development of the former St Andrew’s Church could see a huge food hall introduced into the local area.

The development proposes a brand-new food hall, banqueting court and cultural centre in the former Protestant church at Suffolk Street.

The plans are being proposed by Michael Wright, a member of the famous Wrights of Howth family, who owns a number of venues across Dublin, including Dublin Airport’s Marquette food hall.

Wright has said that he hopes the proposed food hall at St Andrew’s will rival Cork’s well-known English Market. He was granted a seven-day drinks licence in late March for the proposed food hall.

“At the moment it is in planning, but we’re really excited about the future project,” he told Dublin Gazette.

Previously, the church was home to a tourism centre, but is currently vacant.

The plans for the development of the church include an internal re-fit to make it suitable for purpose, as well as three extensions to the church for storage and waste management services.

A re-development of the existing car park is also proposed, which would include movable seating and ‘soft and hard’ landscaping.

Graeme McQueen, from Dublin Chamber, said the proposed development is “interesting and exciting”.

He told Dublin Gazette: “The prospect of St Andrew’s Church being turned into a food hall is a really interesting and exciting one.

“It’s always good to see underused buildings in the city being reimagined for a new generation.”

However, the transformation of the car park has led to complaints from local businesses, who believe a re-development of the lot will lead to an influx of vermin into the area.

Local tapas restaurant Salamanca has sent a letter to the council lodging concerns about the development.

Salamanca owner Caroline Boyle sent a letter to Dublin City Council, saying that if the car park is dug up, it will lead to additional vermin in the area. The restaurant fears that if this is the case, vermin may end up on the Salamanca premises.

Salamanca had not responded to a request for comment by the time of going to print.
When asked about the potential of vermin being introduced into the area, McQueen said: “You’re always going to get some element of disruption when revamping an old building in the heart of the city centre.

“In terms of the issue of vermin, Dublin Chamber would be confident that any such issue could be addressed quickly and easily.”

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