Sustainable development in north Dublin?

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      By Neil Callanan

      Development sources believe Baldoyle industrial estate in Dublin 13 could be the next brownfield site identified for major redevelopment because of its alternative land use value. The site is in fractional ownership, with Fas amongst the landowners, but its position at Howth junction means it would be suitable for sustainable development given its strong public transport links. There will be three Dart stations near the site once the Clongriffin Dart station opens (the others are Howth Junction and Bayside) and the M50 is eventually expected to be extended to the area. It is also less than seven kilometres from Dublin airport and around the same distance from Metropark where the metro north and metro west lines will join.

      The site is 90 acres in size, about half the size of Sandyford, and could could cater for a new town the size of Naas according to development sources.

      One source suggested that the local authority should create a special development zone area for the site. Then each landowner would be given a percentage stake in the overall estate which would be the equivalent of the percentage of land owned by them in the estate. This would ensure that parkland and some lower density housing could be created as part of the masterplan for the future redevelopment of the site.

      At a 3:1 plot ratio, the site could deliver more than one million square feet of development based on an average building height of five storeys and a penthouse level. It would be suitable for 7,000 to 8,000 residential units as well as offices and still allow the creation of public squares, pitches for sports, schools and other amenities. The proximity of the Malahide Road and Clare Hall shopping centre would mean there was no need for large scale development as part of the masterplan.

      Land in the industrial estate currently sells from e2.5 to e3 million an acre but a developer would have to pay almost double that to buy up large areas of the estate, a development source said. However, such a large scale redevelopment would probably have to wait until the Clongriffin scheme was completed before it would become acceptable to planners.

      The sources also said Coolock industrial estate would be suitable for a similar redevelopment.

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