Ticknock retirement village plan halted after objections

by Staff Reporter

THE proposed development of a retirement village at Ticknock on the outer side of the M50  near Sandyford has been halted, following a meeting of Dun Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council on December 10.
Councillors unanimously agreed with the County Manager’s recommendations not to rezone a seven-hectare site which would have allowed the retirement village to proceed. Last week, there were angry demonstrations by local residents on the site of the proposed development in the foothills of the Dublin Mountains in the run up to the council meeting to decide the issue.
This was the second time the development proposal was  voted on by DLRCC. In spite of having been passed the first time, it subsequently came to light that the planning on the Ticknock site was not suitable for such a development, being mainly agricultural land, and a variation would have to be made to the DLR County Development Plan before the project could go ahead.
Following a period of public consultation, 100 submissions were received from local residents, as well as organisations such as the Road Safety Authority and the HSE.
There were 67 objections, and 24 supporting the development. Objections to the development included noise pollution, urbanisation of a rural location and a lack of amenities for the retirees. Those supporting considered the proposal would provide an economic boost to the area.
County manager Owen Keegan then drew up a detailed report on the findings and recommended that the retirement village should not go ahead for all of the reasons outlined in the public consultation.
Reacting to the decision to stop the development, Cllr Lettie McCarthy  (Lab) said: “It was encouraging to meet so many like-minded people who really appreciate the beauty of the mountain. When you think of it, we are so lucky to be able to avail of public transport in our city centre and be on the mountains less than a half hour later.”
Cllr Gerry Horkan (FF) said: “It wasn’t really a surprise.  Ultimately, there was no great debate, we [cllrs] took on board what the manager recommended and respected the public consultation process.”
Ballinteer  woman Bernadine O’Higgins, who had protested against the development, said: “There was a local feeling that it is wrong to isolate older people and that elderly people should remain part of the community and take an active part in it.
“Is there any sense in developing greenfield sites such as this, when there is currently more than an adequate supply of serviced, well-located zoned land within the county?”
However, developer Rod McGovern said the facility would have created 200 full and part-time jobs, and all of the services required by the elderly would have been provided on site.

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