Apartment scheme in Swords ‘last chance’ to get it right

by Sylvia Pownall

Swords residents are being urged to have their say on plans for 278 apartments in blocks up to nine storeys in height.

MKN Property Group is set to apply to An Bord Pleanana for permission to build the Strategic Housing Development scheme on lands at Fosterstown and Cremona.

The proposal includes 125 one-bed units, 146 two-beds and seven three-beds in three blocks ranging from five to nine storeys in height, along with a crèche and one retail unit.

Plans also allow for a new link road from the Forest Road with a pedestrian and cycle route to the Dublin Road/R132.

Cllr Darragh Butler (FF) has expressed reservations and highlighted the need for the scheme to be carried out “correctly” so it does not adversely impact on residents.

He shared his draft submission in his latest newsletter and urged others to make their own submissions and have their views taken on board.

Cllr Butler wrote: “I am not anti-housing and I am not anti-development and I accept that this land next to a proposed MetroLink stop will be higher density than would normally be the case…

“But this Strategic Housing Development that shows such blatant disregard to the Swords Masterplans agreed only last year should be rejected…

“The developer should be told to come back with a plan that remains within the requirements of that Masterplan.”

Cllr Butler said the Fosterstown scheme was the last chance for a new school on the Forest Road, warning: “There is no more land left after this Masterplan land is dealt with.

“Do we want to be looking back in 10 and 20 years and reviewing how the SHD process decimated local communities and allowed over development without the necessary resources to be put in place?

“This is our last chance to get this right and sort out the school shortage issue for the Forest Road area of Swords.

This SHD attempts to paint a picture that it is connected to the rest of Swords. It is not, It will be part of the Forest Road area, tying into the existing under-resourced Forest Road / River-Valley area in terms of schools and playing pitches.”

Cllr Butler said no development on the Fosterstown lands should be allowed to proceed without the new school and playing fields.

He also expressed concern over the proposed height of the scheme, and said no building should go ahead prior to the MetroLink project getting the go-ahead.

The deadline for submissions to An Bord Pleanala is Wednesday November 11.

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