Wicklow council has refused permission for Johnny Ronan's €50m 'sports' hotel

Plans for the 141-room development near Enniskerry have been shot down.

By Gordon Deegan

DEVELOPER JOHNNY RONAN has suffered a fresh planning blow after Wicklow County Council refused permission for his planned €50 million ‘sports’ hotel near Enniskerry.

The decision by Wicklow County Council follows on from last month’s decision by Dublin City Council to refuse planning for Ronan’s 22-storey Aqua Vetro tower on Dublin’s George’s Quay.

The plan by Ronan’s firm involved a 141-bedroom hotel at St Valery’s, Enniskerry, County Wicklow marketed towards the sports tourism sector with a particular emphasis on cycling. It consisted of a four-storey, over-basement hotel including a restaurant, bar and cafe area.

However, the council refused planning permission on two grounds, stating that the proposal by reason of its scale and bulk would be an intrusive feature and would impact on views from the N11 to St Valerys and be detrimental to the visual amenities of the area.

The council also stated that the development of the hotel would be premature pending the determination by Transport Infrastructure Ireland of a road layout for the area.

The decision will result in the loss of 120 potential jobs if it not overturned on appeal to An Bord Pleanála.

Johnny Ronan Johnny Ronan
Source: Laura Hutton/Photocall Ireland


A previous hotel proposal was turned down for the site but Ronan’s architects stated that bulk and massing of the new proposal had been significantly reduced.

A planner’s report by the council in January had recommended refusal.

However, Ronan’s firm obtained from Wicklow County Council a six-month extension to the application to allow him time to meet the council’s concerns.

The plan was facing opposition from some locals. Residents WB and MM Somerville told Wicklow County Council that they were objecting to the plan having regard to the scale, size and height of the hotel.

In a separate objection, Eric and Cara Culliton stated that the development “would ruin our existing level of privacy as we will be overlooked and destroy our scenic views forever”.

However, traders from Enniskerry lodged a submission in support of the proposal stating that the plan will be a hugely beneficial addition to the community.

They said that the target market of the hotel for sports tourism would serve to showcase the beauty of the area.

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