Your representatives, what they are saying and doing on your behalf

What have your representatives been saying, what have they been doing. And do the two match?
Have your representatives been interested in any form of debate?

Your representitives are public servants. We employ them!
Let your representatives know how you feel about the issues this development raises.

[This is an unfolding story - so please get in touch with any representatives/quotes we may have missed below (and corrections too:) )].


Cllr. Nial Ring - Ind

“This monstrosity is going to have a dramatic impact on the area,” he said.
Having a development of this size that was exclusively for renters would create a “transient population” that would not integrate into the community, he said.
“This looks like student accommodation. I have no doubt discussions are going on with DCU and St Pat’s to lease out some of these units.”
Overall, he said, “it is an appalling scheme”


Cllr. Ring was kind enough to contact us and made a submission to ABP (local copy here).


The Greens are in effect supporting these developments by allowing SHD developments to continue, when they could be immediately stopped (as co-living and student block developments were stopped).

More surprisingly in terms of Green politics - this development is sacrificing a green lung in the city to development. It is unclear whether the Green party is even aware of the full scale of the plans for the Green Network along the Tolka, the greenways or cycleways or footpaths long planned for the area.

Environmentally it would make more sense to make use of vacant housing and increase the density of existing housing. The environmental effects of new-builds - in the production of concrete and steel, the truck movements and noise, the energy and water needed to build, the use of sand (which is a scarce resource) etc. etc. etc. are widely known.

Neasa Hourigan TD

In view of the above TD - Hourigan was very brave to hold zoom debate on this development which was very welcome. In the meeting she did seem initially to welcome the development and did praise the tasteful design. It was later noted that Hines were sitting in on the meeting.

She also made a submission to ABP against the plan in its current form (local copy here).

Cllr. Donna Cooney - Greens - Clontarf

Green Party councillor Donna Cooney urged the planners to recommend a rejection of the scheme. “It just seems to be an extremely high density, very greedy development.” (Irish Times - 29th. Jul. 2021)

Unfortunately, SHD plans (as the Greens may know, being in Government) do not allow rejection on this basis. High density, greedy developments is exactly what SHD planning promotes.

Cllr. Cooney was kind enough to contact us and has made a submission, together with Neasa Hourigan and others, to ABP (local copy here).

MEP - Ciarán Cuffe

former Cllr Dublin North Inner City, MEP

On the development at Poplar Rd, Ballybough in 2018:

"I am concerned at the use of small 38.6 sq. m. effectively single-aspect north-facing studio apartments. Article 2 3.3 of the City Development Plan states that 'The provision of quality housing that is suitable for citizens throughout their lives and adaptable to people's changing circumstances is fundamental to creating a compact city with sustainable neighbourhoods'. I do not believe that these micro-apartments are compatible with this statement and ask that they be replaced with larger units." (source PDF)

partially quoted in "Is Build-to-Rent Crowding Out Other Kinds of Homes in Dublin?"

Many of the flats proposed at Holy Cross College in Clonliffe very similar to this - and yet the Greens broadly support this development.

MEP - Cuffe did get back to us: "I share your concern about the development of such a large concentration of small scale accommodation, designed for transitory living. Accordingly, I have written a submission on this matter, which you can find here." (local copy here).

An interesting line in his submission: "Less than 10% of the units on these lands formerly owned by the St Laurence O’Toole Diocesan Trust are intended for social or affordable homes. The late Laurence O’Toole was respected for his works of charity, especially towards the homeless, whom he housed, and it is regrettable that the previous landowners have not committed more of the site to the provision of social or affordable housing."


Marie Sherlock TD

  • Address: Great Western Square, Phibsborough, Dublin 7, Ireland

TD - Sherlock held a zoom debate on this development which was very welcome. She also made a submission to ABP against the plan (local copy here).

Cllr. Declan Meenagh - Labour - Cabra-Glasnevin

said the smaller apartment sizes permitted under build-to-rent provisions were comparable to prison cells.

“Prison cells surrounded by gardens is not what we want. This isn’t sustainable development. The community isn’t against development but they are against this development.”

Sinn Fein

TD - Eoin Ó Broin - Dublin Mid-West

See: Reboot Republic

TD - Mary Lou McDonald - Dublin Central

"Build-to-rent’ schemes exploit housing shortage and drive up price of land, making housing even more unaffordable, Sinn Féin leader argues.
Mary Lou McDonald has stated that if planning is approved for the 1,614 ‘build-to-rent’ apartments on the grounds of Clonliffe College in Drumcondra, Dublin, it will only further exacerbate the housing crisis."


See also: Irish Times, Independent

Cllr. Janice Boylan


Cllr. Boylan held a zoom debate on this development which was very welcome.


Cllr. Cat O’Driscoll - SD - SD - Cabra-Glasnevin

Cat O’Driscoll also said the large number of studio and one-bedroom apartments made it “feel like a student village and I’m wondering where will we find space for families in the inner city”


An Rabharta Glas - Green Left

An Rabharta Glas got back to us with the following statement:

"We at An Rabharta Glas share your shock and dismay at the proposal for the Holy Cross College Strategic Housing Development. The proposed
development is wrongheaded and does not provide the right approach to solving the current housing crisis.

While we recognise the dire need for more high-quality affordable housing, located in places that have good access to public transport and other amenities, large scale build-to-rent developments do nothing to help ordinary families find secure and affordable homes"

Fine Gael

Cllr. Ray McAdam


Cllr. Ray McAdam distributed a printed newsletter locally in late July:

"...It is proposed under this application that 1614 homes be developed as part of a Build to Rent scheme and that the former Clonliffe College lands be restored and accessed by the local community, once again. The proposed development is spread across 22 acres and proposes the retention and restoration of the existing protected structures on the site with the construction of 12 separate new apartment buildings. The apartments will be developed in a series of new buildings combined with the renovation of the historic existing buildings. In total, 322 of the new apartments (20%) will be made available to Dublin City Council for social and affordable housing. The planning application was lodged late last week and An Bord Pleanála is still validating it. Full details of the application are available at Please email me if you have any specific questions or concerns about the proposed development..."

Cllr. McAdam was unable to hold any form of meeting (zoom or otherwise), despite requests to do so.

Catholic Church

Is the Church for or against the communities it proports to represent? Does it feel it owns the lands paid for and upkept by centuries of donations from the post famine population? What is its concept of social responsibility? What guarantees can it give for the vast swathes of land it still controls in the republic - and how they will be developed in the future?

(if anyone has their official position on these developments/questions please let us know)


Archbishop Dermot Farrell
Archdiocese Of Dublin, Drumcondra Road Lower, Dublin 9, Ireland.
Telephone: 01 8379253, Email:


The Holy See must permit each sale of Church land.
Governorate of the Vatican City State,
Legal Office - Ufficio Giuridico,
Governatorato dello Statodella Città del Vaticano,
00120 Citta del Vaticano

Telephone (39) 6 698 901 80 (39) 6 698 818 15
E-mail address

(any more direct contact information welcome!)


(direct contact information welcome!)