Noel Smyth renews plans for Leopardstown Road scheme as developers vie for suitable building sites
Solicitor-turned-developer Noel Smyth is reviving his plans to redevelop a site on Leopardstown Road in Dublin 18. The 0.73 hectare (1.8 acre) site was formerly occupied by a house named Rocklawn, which was razed after an entity associated with the developer, named Wexele, acquired the property in 2005.
A different entity linked to Smyth, named Bridgeclip Developments, has applied this month for planning permission on the site for 42 new homes, comprising 26 apartments (one-, two- and three-bed units) and 16 three-bed townhouses.
In 2007 at the height of the market, Smyth had ambitions to develop 100 apartments in blocks of up to six storeys on the site.
His company was refused planning permission by the local council and later by An Bord Pleanála following an appeal. The proposal included 125 basement parking spaces, whereas the latest plans include provisions for 58 car parking spaces at surface level, which should result in significant construction cost savings.
It is not known whether Smyth plans to develop the site himself should planning be granted, or if he will sell it to cash in on the pent-up demand for ready-to-go sites.
In 2016, a company related to Smyth secured planning permission for an office development nearby on Arkle Road in Sandyford and subsequently sold it to a London-based developer. According to the recent Knight Frank
‘‘ It is not known whether Smyth plans to develop the site himself should planning be granted, or if he will sell it to cash in on the pent-up demand for ready-to-go sites
the lack of availability of suitable sites was identified as the biggest obstacle to construction among developers who were surveyed.
This is a marked change from 2017, when the lack of sites was ranked in third place and when low residential sales prices were identified as the main obstacle.
The survey notes the increasing trend of developers buying sites without planning permission, but Smyth’s site would be much more attractive to developers and funders alike should planning be granted, if he does not develop it himself.
The Rocklawn site is just around the corner from Smyth’s home Lisieux Hall on Murphystown Road. Last year he successfully obtained planning permission to redevelop the mansion’s grounds following his company’s application for 69 new homes, comprising 17 houses and 52 apartments.