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  • Northside West

Phibsborough Shopping Centre dispute

Monday, 15th April, 2019 8:00am
Phibsborough Shopping Centre dispute

A concept of the preferred option for the new Dalymount Park which will be shared between Bohs and Shelbourne FC.

Phibsborough Shopping Centre dispute

A concept of the preferred option for the new Dalymount Park which will be shared between Bohs and Shelbourne FC.

DUBLIN City Council has vowed to press ahead with the development of Dalymount Park, regardless of the outcome of a dispute threatening plans for Phibsborough Shopping Centre.

The €50 million revamp of the centre included proposals to connect the new soccer stadium with the centre through an open plaza that would essentially be a village centre for Phibsborough.

Last week, an impasse between Tesco and developers Mm Capital over deliveries to the retailer emerged, with both sides blaming each other for the dispute.

Mm Capital claimed the row was causing the redevelopment of both the shopping centre and Dalymount Park to look “increasingly uncertain”.

Managing director, Derek Poppinga, said “fresh demands” from the retailer were making the project financially and logistically unfeasible, and the development could be shelved indefinitely.

“We have, or at least had, big plans to create a vibrant public space and civic plaza for the local community,” he said.

“We see this as a unique opportunity to revive this centrally located site which would in turn contribute in no small part to the regeneration of the wider Phibsbrough area.”

However, Tesco denies it has made any “fresh demands” and said in a statement it had been consistent across all its dealings with Mm Capital over several years. 

“Our position, on record throughout the very extended planning process, is that we are seeking to maintain deliveries for our store,” the statement reads.

“Currently the store receives deliveries to the front.

“This right to deliver to the front of the store is contained in our deed of conveyance and we have been making deliveries in this manner for over 20 years (since the store was operated as a Quinnsworth).”

Tesco said it welcomes development for Phibsborough, but added that the plans would impact on its ability to trade.

Mm Capital claims it designed the scheme to address Tesco’s concerns and went to great lengths to ensure car parking is maintained and to provide a purpose-built service yard to the rear of the store.

News of the dispute has caused concern for fans of Bohemian FC and local residents. Dublin City Council issued a statement to reassure soccer fans that the Dalymount Park redevelopment would go ahead regardless of the outcome of the row.

“Dublin City Council is aware that the owners of Phibsborough Shopping Centre, Mm Capital, have released a statement stating that the redevelopment plans for the shopping centre and indeed Dalymount Park may be in jeopardy,” the statement said.

“Dublin City Council is fully committed to the Dalymount Park redevelopment project and intend to see this historic venue fully developed into a vibrant municipal stadium in the coming years.”

The current preferred option for the new Dalymount Park includes an entrance to the east stand from a new public plaza through the redeveloped Phibsbrough Shopping Centre. 

The council said the proposed integrated nature of both projects would not just provide a new community facility, but also have wider benefits for the Phibsborough community.

“If the shopping centre redevelopment does not happen for whatever reason, the council will continue to progress with the Dalymount redevelopment project with an alternative design,” the council said.

“Dublin City Council is in the process of procuring an architect led design team who should be appointed by mid-summer and this will be factored into their brief.”

Meanwhile, Joe Costello, chairperson of Stoneybatter Pride of Place and Labour local election candidate, said residents of Phibsborough and Bohemian FC fans were being short changed by the dispute.

“It is high time that all involved came together under the auspices of Dublin City Council, which now owns Dalymount Park, and agreed a way forward in the interests of all,” he said.

Fianna Fáil candidate in Dublin Central, Mary Fitzpatrick, said she had written to Dublin City Council to request that it initiate mediation to solve the dispute.

“It is disappointing that the site’s developer has yet to secure buy-in for their plans from the anchor tenant,” she said.

“Fact is that the longer this impasse continues without intervention, residents and businesses continue to suffer.”

Tesco said it has agreed to a further meeting with the developer “in an effort to resolve the matter”.

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