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Bedrooms over pub would ‘worsen long-term accommodation shortage’


From this week's Galway City Tribune

From this week's Galway City Tribune

Bedrooms over pub would ‘worsen long-term accommodation shortage’ Bedrooms over pub would ‘worsen long-term accommodation shortage’

Galway City Council has turned down a planning application to retain en suite bedrooms over the former Paddy’s Bar on Prospect Hill.

Jonathan and Derek Corbett of Eastat Ltd, which is currently revamping the building, had applied for permission to retain eleven en suite bedrooms on the first and second floors – these were previously used as a doctor’s surgery and six duplex apartments.

The Council rejected the application, noting that it would be contrary to national housing policy to change six apartments in the long-term private rental market to eleven en suite bedrooms for use as short-term letting accommodation.

“It is considered that the proposed short-term usage, including the pattern of occupancy and servicing of the property, could give rise to conditions which would contribute to the ongoing deficit of long-term housing accommodation,” the Council ruled.

In their assessment of the planning application, Executive Planners Fiona Glynn and Liam Blake noted that the building is located in a designated Rent Pressure Zone.

The retention application specified that the rooms were “to be used as ancillary accommodation to the hospitality business on the ground floor”.

However, the Executive Planners said there was no connection between the pub and the rooms and said: “It has not been established how the eleven en suite rooms are ancillary to the public house and no justification has been provided to demonstrate that the rooms are allied to the public house.”

“The Planning Authority have concerns regarding the intensification of use to eleven en suite rooms which could possibly cater for 22 persons daily if short-term letting and/or weekly if intended as student accommodation and also note there is no provision for communal facilities to serve the bedrooms which are considered to have fairly substandard operational facilities.

“The Planning Authority does not impose a complete prohibition on short-term uses in the city centre and surrounding areas. However, the proposed change of use from established long-term rental to short-term letting would set an undesirable precedent for such a change of use in view of the status of Galway City being defined as a Rent Pressure Zone,” the Council said.

Eastat Ltd holds a ten-year lease on the building from Weleyre Holdings Ltd – operated by Padraic and Martina McHale of the McHale Group – which owns a portfolio of buildings on that side of eastern side of Eyre Square with the Comer Group.

Extensive renovations are continuing in the former Paddy’s Bar, which will be known as Mary Mullen’s when it opens before the end of the year.

Through Portbury Holdings Ltd, the Corbetts are involved with Darragh Mullin who already operates Carroll’s on Dominick Street and The Hole in the Wall on Eyre Street.

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