Larry Mullen shows desire to live in a greener house

Larry Mullen shows desire to live in a greener house

Postby PVC King » Thu Dec 24, 2009 5:43 pm

How to dismantle an energy-wasting house? Ask Larry Mullen, the U2 drummer (pictured here 2nd from right) planning to tear down his Howth home and rebuild it because of its poor energy rating.

The musician has applied to demolish his sprawling beachfront bungalow on Claremont Road and replace it with a 12,000 sq ft, six-bedroom property with solar panels and other ecological building materials.

While U2 were accused of creating a huge carbon footprint on their 360-degree world tour, the rockers care about the environment at home. Earlier this year, Bono installed a wood pellet boiler, an energyefficient heating system, at his Killiney home.

Mullen wants to revamp his northside base after discovering that it has a very poor building energy rating (BER). These ratings test a house’s energy performance, and are marked on a scale from A to G. Every house that is sold or rented is required to have a rating. When the drummer bought Claremont Lodge 20 years ago, it was a modest single-storey home, but he has added a series of extensions over the years. Planners acting for the U2 star and his girlfriend, Ann Acheson, say the house has “poor circulation, poor energy efficiency and a very high BER”.

Mullen, who shares the house with Acheson and the couple’s three children, wants to demolish the property and replace it with a two-storey-over-basement “passive” house. Experts claim that passive houses are 85% more energy efficient than conventional homes and produce 94% fewer carbon emissions.

Mullen, the only member of U2 still living on the northside of Dublin, will use an underground heat pump, solar panels and a “heat recovery system” to achieve this standard.

A submission to the council states that the new house will be “designed to achieve a good BER”. This will be attained by using triple glazing and a series of energy-efficient heating systems. Instead of a typical gas boiler, Mullen’s house will have a natural gas high-efficiency condenser boiler that will heat underfloor radiators. The underground heat pump is 4.5 times more efficient than a traditional gas or oil heating system.

The drummer’s home will produce hot water using solar collectors and Mullen will be able to heat and cool the house with a “building energy management control system”.

Last year, the musician was granted permission to bulldoze Claremont Cottage, an adjoining property, and add a series of extensions to Claremont Lodge, his main home, but he has decided that enlarging the house will only further diminish its energy efficiency.

Mullen’s planning consultant says the existing accommodation “requires substantial reorganisation and redesign to fit the family’s needs, and to comply with recent energy conservation standards”.

The new house, Mullen’s planner says, will take advantage of the location’s sea views and “reflect the site’s special position overlooking Ireland’s Eye and the Sutton/Baldoyle estuary”. Timber window frames and screens will create a “beach-house style” in keeping with the seaside location.

Two neighbouring buildings were recently added to the Record of Protected Structures by the local council, but Mullen’s agent insists that the musician’s house is of “little architectural merit”.

The roofline of the new house, which will face the strand at Claremont, will be kept low to make it as inconspicuous as possible from the beach. The height of the eaves will be 2.74m lower than the adjacent property, his consultant says. Inside there will be a gym, office, games room, playroom, several reception rooms and six bedrooms.

The Artane-born musician bought the neighbouring property to safeguard his privacy when it came on the market in 2000. Mullen paid €1m for the house, €320,000 above its asking price.

Plain sailing or nimby power to rock?
PVC King

Re: Larry Mullen shows desire to live in a greener house

Postby Global Citizen » Thu Dec 24, 2009 11:08 pm

Tell them to Fuck Off.
It's Christmas Eve for God's sake.
Global Citizen
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Re: Larry Mullen shows desire to live in a greener house

Postby KerryBog2 » Sat Dec 26, 2009 6:31 pm

Cmon PVC, surely you don't buy that crock? It's just spin. He wants a new house, he is afraid (a) the planners will not give PP to demolish and (b) he could be curtailed by existing boundaries. So, get a consultant and a media handler. Then get some gombeen journalist to write up a piece about "energy efficiency" (wow, it even has a condenser boiler!! ), get the glasrai onside and bob's your uncle.
Bono's pad is gutted, undergoing a complete rebuild. Not sure that he has a wood pellet boiler either. Though maybe he's gone green since his application for a pool was turned down.
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Re: Larry Mullen shows desire to live in a greener house

Postby PVC King » Sun Dec 27, 2009 1:03 pm


The article struck me as incomplete; the consultant was un-named and the scale of the property other than number of bedrooms not stated. I haven't seen the application so I have no idea what the credentials are; you would be looking for a top decile rating to give the argument legs.


Can I take it from the composition and time of your post that you were under the influence? Surely you don't think that the locals use archiseek to source all their planning info as opposed to examination of every planning notice they see appear?


I find this application interesting; EPCs or BERs will take on more importance as energy takes centre stage not just in real estate but also in transport, global security etc. Has the applicant devised a new argument to secure a permission that otherwise may have had difficulty on conservation grounds? The location of the property in a nimby hotspot such as this provides the perfect test.
PVC King

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