Should the Clarence Hotel redevelopment get permission?

Should the Clarence Hotel redevelopment get permission?

Yes
66
29%
No
163
71%
 
Total votes : 229

Re: Should the Clarence Hotel redevelopment get permission?

Postby CC105 » Thu Jul 17, 2008 2:18 pm

Great stuff + added bonus of some economic activity and construction jobs.
CC105
Member
 
Posts: 115
Joined: Mon Oct 22, 2007 8:41 pm

Re: Should the Clarence Hotel redevelopment get permission?

Postby ctesiphon » Thu Jul 17, 2008 2:34 pm

CC105 wrote:Great stuff + added bonus of some economic activity and construction jobs.

I hear there are vacancies coming up in a few Midlands councils at the next local elections. Your attitude would go down well there.

As far as I can see, any claim DCC or the Board had to an awareness of architectural heritage is now dead in the water. How either body can stand over any future decision regarding protected structures is beyond my comprehension.

This is a shameful moment indeed.
User avatar
ctesiphon
Old Master
 
Posts: 1949
Joined: Fri Apr 01, 2005 3:39 pm
Location: Dublin

Re: Should the Clarence Hotel redevelopment get permission?

Postby missarchi » Thu Jul 17, 2008 2:37 pm

what are the odds of this going to the high court??
missarchi
Old Master
 
Posts: 1796
Joined: Sat Dec 08, 2007 7:53 pm

Re: Should the Clarence Hotel redevelopment get permission?

Postby gunter » Thu Jul 17, 2008 2:50 pm

If they knocked the whole thing down and built a contemporary hotel, It would be less objectionable.

This will have all the integrity of a Las Vegas casino.

Foster would not get away with this in England, or anywhere else for that matter. We've disgraced ourselves again.
gunter
Old Master
 
Posts: 1925
Joined: Wed Jan 16, 2008 10:33 pm
Location: Dublin

Re: Should the Clarence Hotel redevelopment get permission?

Postby GrahamH » Thu Jul 17, 2008 3:00 pm

This is terrible news. Before I even checked up on the details of this, and having discussed it with others, it was quite obvious what the undercurrents of this decision are. The emergence of the decision process/hierarchy merely confirmed it.

The thoroughly excellent and exceptionally detailed, considered, rational and balanced 88-page Inspector's report by Senior Inspector Kevin Moore dissected and pulled apart in minute detail the arguments of both the applicant and indeed many of DCC.

He rejected the application.

The Board, in a page and a half, granted permission. Their intepretation of 'exceptional circumstances' is frightening in its implications.
I won't say much more on this case.

The refusal versus granting of this case was written all over it.
GrahamH
Old Master
 
Posts: 4592
Joined: Tue Oct 15, 2002 11:24 am
Location: Ireland

Re: Should the Clarence Hotel redevelopment get permission?

Postby fergalr » Thu Jul 17, 2008 4:40 pm

Sorry to inject a moment of levity, but word of Archiseek's black mood has spread beyond the confines of this forum :p

archiseek is fumin'
fergalr
Senior Member
 
Posts: 513
Joined: Wed Nov 30, 2005 3:33 pm
Location: Howth, Co. Dublin

Re: Should the Clarence Hotel redevelopment get permission?

Postby publicrealm » Thu Jul 17, 2008 6:48 pm

Nassty Board.. wicked, trickssssy, falssse!

We hates them, yesss
publicrealm
Member
 
Posts: 284
Joined: Mon Nov 21, 2005 12:50 am
Location: D6

Re: Should the Clarence Hotel redevelopment get permission?

Postby kefu » Thu Jul 17, 2008 8:33 pm

Effectively, we have - in the space of six months of recession - stepped back four decades to a stage where any development is automatically good because of our changing economic circumstances.
God knows what will be considered acceptable in two year's time when we really start to feel the pinch.
kefu
Senior Member
 
Posts: 665
Joined: Thu Mar 29, 2001 12:00 am
Location: Dublin

Re: Should the Clarence Hotel redevelopment get permission?

Postby ctesiphon » Thu Jul 17, 2008 8:42 pm

fergalr wrote:Sorry to inject a moment of levity, but word of Archiseek's black mood has spread beyond the confines of this forum :p


Didn't you see the name of that poster over there? The circle is smaller than you think! ;)

publicrealm-
I'm really at a loss to understand this one. I'm sitting here - cocoa, pipe and slippers all present and correct - with the Inspector's Report and the Board's Decision, trying to get a handle on their reasoning, but it's not falling into place. I don't think the Board has been wicked, tricksy and false, I'm saying it's made the wrong decision.

*** *** ***
The Board considered that the measures proposed for the conservation and re-use of the historic fabric of the protected structures, in particular, the design and conservation strategy in relation to all the accommodation addressing Wellington Quay, together with the unique design features visible above the historic parapet level, would ensure that the integrity of the Liffey Quays Conservation Area would not be undermined...
...
...having regard to the policies of the development plan, which include policies to encourage the protection of the existing use of premises listed in the Record of Protected Structures, the Board considered that the development which proposed the continuance of hotel use on the site would conserve an intrinsic aspect of the special social interest of the premises and would not materially contravene the development plan.


This is what passes for the grounds for a decision these days? It seems one aspect (use) of one category (social) is sufficient to trump the other conservation considerations. And flying saucers on the roof don't undermine the integrity of a conservation area. Glad to have that clarified.

Also, I'm having trouble finding the relevant policy re continuance of use. Any thoughts?

Would it be H6?
POLICY H6
Dublin City Council actively encourages uses which are compatible with the character of protected structures. In certain cases, the Planning Authority may relax site zoning restrictions in order to secure the preservation and restoration of the buildings. These restrictions, including site development standards, may be relaxed if the protected structure is being restored to the highest standard, the special interest, character and setting of the building is protected and the use and development is consistent with conservation policies and the proper planning and sustainable development of the area.


Looks like an awful stretch of logic. In fact, H6 seems to say the opposite- that top drawer conservation merits a few concessions in other areas.

While I have the page of the DCDP open I may as well stick a couple more up. For balance, like.

POLICY H13
It is the policy of Dublin City Council to protect and enhance the character and historic fabric of conservation areas in the control of development.


POLICY H15
It is the policy of Dublin City Council that new buildings in conservation areas should complement the character of the existing architecture in design, materials and scale.


POLICY H16
It is the policy of Dublin City Council to protect and reinforce the important civic design character of Dublin’s quays, which are designated a conservation area and infill development should complement the character of the quays in terms of context, scale and design.


Still, it'll be a welcome shot in the arm for economy.

*high five*
User avatar
ctesiphon
Old Master
 
Posts: 1949
Joined: Fri Apr 01, 2005 3:39 pm
Location: Dublin

Re: Should the Clarence Hotel redevelopment get permission?

Postby lostexpectation » Thu Jul 17, 2008 9:46 pm

all existing buildings and interiors shall be preserved by record” and the drawings lodged with the architectural archive.


echos of tara and the m3
lostexpectation
Senior Member
 
Posts: 566
Joined: Thu Feb 02, 2006 6:38 pm

Re: Should the Clarence Hotel redevelopment get permission?

Postby shadow » Thu Jul 17, 2008 10:26 pm

protection ain't what it used to be
shadow
Member
 
Posts: 313
Joined: Wed Mar 07, 2001 1:00 am

Re: Should the Clarence Hotel redevelopment get permission?

Postby publicrealm » Thu Jul 17, 2008 10:35 pm

[quote="ctesiphon"]Didn't you see the name of that poster over there? The circle is smaller than you think! ;)

publicrealm-
I'm really at a loss to understand this one. I'm sitting here - cocoa, pipe and slippers all present and correct - with the Inspector's Report and the Board's Decision, trying to get a handle on their reasoning, but it's not falling into place. I don't think the Board has been wicked, tricksy and false, I'm saying it's made the wrong decision.

*** *** ***


ctesiphon

Sorry for being flippant and opaque.

I think the decision is wrong and I fear it will open the 'exceptional circumstances' floodgate (sadly I will end up quoting it frequently in support of my well-heeled clients) - but I couldn't resist taking a poke at the po-faced champions (until recently) of ABP ('my preeccciouuus'). (I have long had a disregard for ABP)

I had left this forum as I was tired of the superiority complex and developers 'bad',4 legs (or 2 storey dross) 'good' bias - but I do accept that this is seriously regressive decision.

I really have no interest in provoking controversy - but is there any possibility that this type of bad decision (not made by planners btw) may be partly a response to the unjustified deification of EVERY protected structure (regardless of intrinsic value) by certain people?

Now you have made me post again!!

I shall fetch my slippers.
publicrealm
Member
 
Posts: 284
Joined: Mon Nov 21, 2005 12:50 am
Location: D6

Re: Should the Clarence Hotel redevelopment get permission?

Postby tommyt » Thu Jul 17, 2008 10:54 pm

All I can express is disgust. Revulsion at a pathetic decision for a PATHETIC proposal that smacks of the minnowism that permeates so many decisions that have emerged lately for specific projects in our city centre.
Any of you "big and shiny = progress" boosters check my record on here. I am not anti -new development once the context and function is correct but this is something I take as a personal affront. I suppose arrogant middle ranking career-Brits built the quays in the first place but to piss away what is ,by accident or design ,a unique urban set piece in global terms (ie the quays between Hueston and Butt bridge) is an exercise in extreme folly. Even the most deluded speculator -led illegal demolition on the D7 quays hasl not done as much psychologial damage as what we are about to have inflicted upon us.
If the Clarence wasn't viable on its preferred busines model by Not Us Ltd they should have fucked off elsewhere downstream and built their own shangri-la. God knows there's enough areas of the Liffey waterfront still in need of some masturbatory legacy project we can all guffaw at in years to come for its sheer audacity.

Come back SUAS ,all is forgiven! sure we'll need a ride down to anthony gormley's slashman when the time comes.

I'm at a loss to think of even a middle ranking English provincial shithole that would put up with such an awful proposal.
tommyt
Member
 
Posts: 455
Joined: Mon Oct 18, 2004 7:39 pm
Location: D5

Re: Should the Clarence Hotel redevelopment get permission?

Postby ctesiphon » Thu Jul 17, 2008 11:55 pm

No worries, pr. I wondered if I was just missing your drift. I agree about the 'exceptional circumstances' bit- it needed clarification, but this is a worrying precedent.

Re. PS deification- I had a similar conversation today regarding the wholesale transfer of the old List 1s and 2s onto the RPS. It started me wondering whether a smaller RPS and significantly beefed up ACA provisions mightn't be a way to go.

Until recently, I may have had a bit too much of the greenhorn faith in ABP, but those days would appear to be at an end.

*wipes tear*

Also, I discovered what policy was being referred to- it's H6A, passed as Variation No.2 of the Development Plan in 2005 (and thus not in the online version of the DP- it's p.9 of the Inspector's Report). You might know it as the Bewley's Variation:

Policy H6A: It is the policy of Dublin City Council to encourage the protection of the existing or last use of premises listed on the Record of Protected Structures where that use is considered to be an intrinsic aspect of the special, social, cultural and/or artistic interest of those premises.

It will be the policy of Dublin City Council in considering applications for planning permission in respect of a change of use of any such premises to take into account as material consideration the contribution of the existing or last use of that structure to special, social, cultural and/ or artistic interest of those premises and/ or whether the new use would be inimical to the special interest identified.


Talk about unforeseen consequences.

Rumours that the next U2 album is provisionally titled Hoist by your own petard - sort of a sequel to ...Atomic Bomb, I think - couldn't be confirmed at the time of writing.
User avatar
ctesiphon
Old Master
 
Posts: 1949
Joined: Fri Apr 01, 2005 3:39 pm
Location: Dublin

Re: Should the Clarence Hotel redevelopment get permission?

Postby hutton » Fri Jul 18, 2008 2:13 am

This was in Phoenix last year. I think it's relevant in so far as a lot of good will has built up towards the U2 boys from the Irish populace - which in fairness been a two way street.

That is until now when it is apparent that the actual truth is Hewson is a tax-avoiding, war games speculating, greedy developer -

Sure make your own mind up...



SIR BONO'S PROFIT FROM WARGAMES

WHEN NOT saving the world or relocating companies off-shore, Bono KBE (Knight Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire) has been busy recently in making interesting investments – with one such gambit being into a software firm which specialises in "extremely realistic videos to be used as training games for the US military".

The recently elevated knight has become part owner in Elevation Partners – a massive US-based investments company set up in 2005 where, along with five other non-U2 partners, Sir Bono has a one sixth partnership. But, regrettably the activities of this and related companies don't always seem to match the world-saving rhetoric of Hewson's finer words.

Only last August Elevation bought a substantial stake into Forbes Media, publisher of Forbes Magazine, which is responsible for printing various "Top 100" type lists – the best known being that of billionaires. Editor-in-chief Malcolm 'Steve' Forbes is, of course, well- known for his "traditional" US Republican agenda. Featuring on a variety of platforms such as his own TV show, "Forbes on Fox", Steve is known for being against gun control, pro death penalty, opposing pollution control, and a world perspective that promotes, as he succinctly puts it himself, a "US not UN Foreign Policy".

Happily the part acquisition of Forbes ran smoothly, with Elevation partner, Roger McNamee, telling the NYT that Bono "was attracted to the magazine because it has a 'point of view,' adding that Bono 'drove this part of the discussion and likes the fact that there has been a consistent philosophy throughout its history'".

However the really cool move by Elevation is over on the US west coast, where it invested a reported $300 million in 2005 on a company called Pandemic/Bioware Studios. As reported in the Boston Globe, Pandemic is currently preparing to launch a product called 'Mercenaries 2: World in Flames, "a violent video game in which players become hired mercenaries who invade Venezuela, where a tyrant has tampered with the country's oil supply" – in other words the opportunity to re-run the CIA's failed 2001 coup attempt in cyberspace, except this time there can be victory.

Not surprisingly, this has not impressed a number of parties including the Venezuela Solidarity Network and the Boston Bolivarian Network, who last July first wrote to Bono to protest.

Helpfully Venezuela Network issued a release stating "Pandemic is a sub-contractor for the US army and the CIA funded Institute for Creative technologies which uses Hollywood techniques to mount war in California's high dessert in order to conduct military training. Pandemic's target market is young men of military recruitment age and indeed this is not Pandemic's first military adventure. Micro Soft NBC reported that the videogame Full Spectrum Warrior was created through the Institute for Creative Technologies in Marina Del Rey, California, a $45 million endeavor formed by the Army five years ago to connect academics with local entertainment and video game industries. The institute subcontracted work to Los Angeles based Pandemic Studios."

Despite the fuss, 10 months on, with the product due out this autumn, there's still no word from the new KBE about the ethical criticisms of his investments. This hasn't stopped a head of steam building up in the meanwhile. One petitioning letter by US clerics Reverend David A Bos, Rabbi Michael Lerner, and Pax Christi USA Ambassador for Peace, Fr. Joe Nangle OFM, has secured further signatures from the US Fellowship for Reconciliation and other religious organizations.
hutton
Senior Member
 
Posts: 993
Joined: Tue Dec 28, 2004 10:14 pm
Location: NAMA HQ

Re: Should the Clarence Hotel redevelopment get permission?

Postby gunter » Fri Jul 18, 2008 8:14 am

There's a long tradition of rock bands trashing hotels
gunter
Old Master
 
Posts: 1925
Joined: Wed Jan 16, 2008 10:33 pm
Location: Dublin

Re: Should the Clarence Hotel redevelopment get permission?

Postby tommyt » Fri Jul 18, 2008 8:28 am

gunter wrote:There's a long tradition of rock bands trashing hotels



Maybe there's some young rock'n'roll wastrels on here who will rob a rolls royce and drive it into the proposed swimming pool;)
tommyt
Member
 
Posts: 455
Joined: Mon Oct 18, 2004 7:39 pm
Location: D5

Re: Should the Clarence Hotel redevelopment get permission?

Postby SunnyDub » Fri Jul 18, 2008 8:43 am

I've just had a look at the decision & it all hinges on "exceptional circumstances", I can see this going to a legal challenge i.e. what is the legal definition of "exceptional circumstances". I fail to see anything exceptional about it except that the design is "exceptional" (in a good or bad way depending on your point of view).

I don't think the economic or hotel use justification could be realistically seen as "exceptional" in the city. There must be numerous places where the same considerations apply. Decision extracts:

"Accordingly, it is considered that the proposed development constitutes exceptional circumstances for
the purposes of section 57(10)(b) of the Planning and Development Act, 2000 which
make it appropriate to permit the part demolition of the protected structures. The
proposed development, therefore, would not be contrary to the provisions of the
development plan when taken as a whole and would be in accordance with the proper
planning and sustainable development of the area
".

"In deciding not to accept the Inspector’s recommendation to refuse permission, the
Board considered that the development proposed, which involves the part demolition
of protected structures, is permissible because the exceptional quality of the design of
the proposed development, allied to the continuation of the historic hotel use on the
site constitute exceptional circumstances
for the purposes of section 57(10)(b) of the
Planning and Development Act, 2000 and that the Board was not, therefore, precluded
from granting permission
".

They follow on with this definition of unique/exceptional, would a judge agree?

"The Board also considered that the unique circumstances of this case, that is, the
exceptional design quality, the conservation proposals and the architectural quality
and cultural significance of the remaining intact historic fabric of buildings on the site
would not constitute an undesirable precedent for the partial demolition of any other
protected structures, either in Dublin or nationally".

Planning Register Reference Number: 1394/07
An Bord Pleanála Reference Number: PL 29S.226834

I'd like to see what happens if this is challenged in the courts as it would have wide ranging significance for other cases also. Let the games begin!
SunnyDub
Member
 
Posts: 210
Joined: Tue May 06, 2008 4:44 pm

Re: Should the Clarence Hotel redevelopment get permission?

Postby GregF » Fri Jul 18, 2008 9:54 am

I'm glad this got the go ahead I suppose.

As I said before, on the one hand it is sad that the old buildings are to be gutted. On the other at least we are getting an internationally renowned achitect to design the make over. It will be a landmark, a talking point, a new feature for Dublin. It will be good for tourism.

What could have been disasterous for the whole site is that had the application failed, U2 (money grabbers that they are) would have abandoned the loss making hotel and put it up for sale. It would have fallen into disrepair and become derelict over the coming years. Then, in steps some cheap developer with Bob the Builder who buys the place and puts in a planning application to gut the place again. The Corpo are fed up with the eye sore and grants permission and then we end up with some inferior shoddy design. This go ahead is the lesser of the 2 evils, when you think about it. Look at the Ormond Hotel across the river and no one, including An Taisce are saying a word about it's appalling neglect!


BTW, remember that the present fancy roof of the Clarence Hotel was added only around 15 years ago. An Taisce opposed that too at the time!
User avatar
GregF
Old Master
 
Posts: 1610
Joined: Tue Oct 31, 2000 1:00 am
Location: Dublin, Ireland

Re: Should the Clarence Hotel redevelopment get permission?

Postby Frank Taylor » Fri Jul 18, 2008 9:59 am

This thread was mentioned on Morning Ireland today with some posts read out.

In contrast with the other posters, I am happy there will be a new hotel and I look forward to it opening.

There are some factors in favour of the decision:
The applicants previous development on the same site 12 years ago was one of the highest quality projects in Dublin. Materials and finishes were to the highest standards and the end product was an addition to the city. So they have form.

The company I worked for used to put its important clients in the Clarence and the clients were always delighted. The hotel had character and wasn't just another 5 star insta-palace.

The new hotel is not a massive incongruous highrise in a low rise area. It's a midrise 6+2 structure. I would suggest that this is a better height for development than the rubbish strewn along the quays in the past decades. Hello Statoil, Ellis and Arran Quay apartments, Bachelors Walk, the list goes on almost as far as the quays themselves. But even these McCrap apartment buildings are better than the pallisade fenced overgrown parking lots that preceded them.

Conservation is worthwhile for buildings that have over the years come to be recognised as distinguished, beautiful, significant. And it is worthwhile preserving buildings that are not individually outstanding but whose loss would detract from a coherent whole such as a Georgian terrace. But Wellington quay is not Merrion Square. It's a higgledy piggledy collection of old and new buildings of varying heights. The older buildings are mostly shabby and the newer ones mostly cheap budget-constrained temporary structures.

I don't see why the organs of the state have any business deciding what is 'good design' or aesthetically pleasing or what appears bulky or what is incongruous with its neighbours. Like all these planning decisions, the judgement is essentially random: one person likes a new building and another doesn't. I would favour a simpler planning regime with more measurable criteria such as allowable building heights , plot ratios and so on.
Frank Taylor
Senior Member
 
Posts: 530
Joined: Sun Aug 01, 2004 9:38 pm
Location: Dublin, Ireland

Re: Should the Clarence Hotel redevelopment get permission?

Postby urbanisto » Fri Jul 18, 2008 10:03 am

To be fair GregF, An Taisce did object to the very inapproriate and downright ugly development proposed for the Ormonde Hotel which if I remember DCC permitted. The development ever happened. Its also not AT's job to enforce proper planning, its merely an interested party. Given the limited voluntary nature of the organisation the fact that it responded to both the Ormond and Clarence proposals, which both have siginificant implications for the Liffey streetscape, is to be congratulated as far I am concerned. They didnt get paid to do it. They didnt get financial assistance to do it. They didnt have access to a range of designers, consulants and the like to get through the process.

But enough of that. I have to say your comments regarding what might happen if this was refused are quite valid. However I think this equally says a lot about the system in this country.
urbanisto
Old Master
 
Posts: 2499
Joined: Mon Jul 16, 2001 12:00 am
Location: Dublin

Re: Should the Clarence Hotel redevelopment get permission?

Postby urbanisto » Fri Jul 18, 2008 10:11 am

Frank Taylor wrote:I don't see why the organs of the state have any business deciding what is 'good design' or aesthetically pleasing or what appears bulky or what is incongruous with its neighbours. Like all these planning decisions, the judgement is essentially random: one person likes a new building and another doesn't. I would favour a simpler planning regime with more measurable criteria such as allowable building heights , plot ratios and so on.


But why Frank? Surely the extended logic here is that no buildings need to be designed by an architect, since their design is subjective. Why not just a uniform building style that removes "subjectivity" from the equation. And could builidng heights or plot ratio not also be considered subjectively...think of some of the highrise advocates on this site - build up no matter what it looks like and no matter how it impacts on the area around it or the people who need to use it.
urbanisto
Old Master
 
Posts: 2499
Joined: Mon Jul 16, 2001 12:00 am
Location: Dublin

Re: Should the Clarence Hotel redevelopment get permission?

Postby SunnyDub » Fri Jul 18, 2008 10:20 am

Planning and Development Act 2000, Section 57 (10) (b)

"A planning authority, or the Board on appeal, shall not grant permission for the demolition of a protected structure or proposed protected structure, save in exceptional circumstances".
SunnyDub
Member
 
Posts: 210
Joined: Tue May 06, 2008 4:44 pm

Re: Should the Clarence Hotel redevelopment get permission?

Postby ctesiphon » Fri Jul 18, 2008 12:07 pm

Frank Taylor wrote:This thread was mentioned on Morning Ireland today with some posts read out.

Either you're all as vain as I am, or there's a problem with the Listen Again function for Morning Ireland around the 1' 50" mark, just where the comments seem to be mentioned.
User avatar
ctesiphon
Old Master
 
Posts: 1949
Joined: Fri Apr 01, 2005 3:39 pm
Location: Dublin

Re: Should the Clarence Hotel redevelopment get permission?

Postby SunnyDub » Fri Jul 18, 2008 12:13 pm

From today's Indo

"Yesterday, An Taisce said the board had set a precedent which could see other listed buildings demolished to make way for new developments. This is only supposed to happen in 'exceptional circumstances' -- where a building was dangerous, for example -- and none had been demonstrated, it said.

"The proposal does open up a precedent on the quays," An Taisce heritage officer Ian Lumley said. "This undermines the architectural conservation area, and it could be the subject of legal proceedings. The board are venturing into very dangerous territory."

In overturning its inspector's recommendation to refuse permission, the board said the high quality of the revamped hotel and benefits to the area meant the project would be in accordance with proper planning and granted permission subject to 19 conditions".
SunnyDub
Member
 
Posts: 210
Joined: Tue May 06, 2008 4:44 pm

PreviousNext

Return to Ireland