Dun Laoghaire Harbour Company, in accordance with the Harbours Act 2015, was dissolved and responsibility transferred from the Department of Transport Tourism and Sport to Dun Laoghaire Rathdown County Council on the 3rd October 2018. The Council is currently at early stages of this transition process and are currently working on all operational and related matters with regards to the Harbour on foot of the very recent transfer.
The original agreement for lease on the buildings associated with the Harbour Innovation Campus project was with the landlord Dun Laoghaire Harbour Company prior to the transfer to Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council on 3 October 2018. This Council welcomed the leasing of the former Ferry Terminal building and the proposed use as an innovation centre.
The Council granted planning permission for this change of use on 31 July 2018 (http://bit.ly/2ABUI7t) and following the transfer of the Harbour earlier this month the Council had visited the building and meet with the new leaseholder. Approval in principle to the foreshore application was granted by the Department of Housing Planning and Environment on 1st October 2018 and had been referred to the Chief States Solicitors Office for drafting. The Council was taken aback at the press release Monday 29th October from the developer with regards to the Harbour Innovation centre. Clearly this is a very disappointing development.
The Council is at the early stages of management of the Harbour and will be preparing a fully integrated plan that benefits the appropriate future development of both the Harbour and the town of Dún Laoghaire and surrounds to ensure that both assets support each other. The use of the ferry terminal building will, if this project does not proceed, form part of that plan.
The Council still supports the project and believes it can proceed at this location which would provide a transformative space for business and will also impact so positively on the town of Dun Laoghaire.