As reported last month, UCD’s plan to renovate Ardmore House and transfer President Andrew Deeks’ office into it is facing a delay. UCD applied for planning permission at the start of December, and was expecting a decision soon after the public observation period ended in January. However, the Department of Culture, Heritage and Gaelteacht wants UCD to carry out a bat survey of the protected structure before the Dun Laoghaire Rathdown County Council grants permission.
The Council is yet to make a decision, but is now likely to request UCD to carry out a survey. The main issue what significance will be attached to the Department’s request. The Council could grant permission, and attach a condition that the project cannot begin until the survey is carried out and reviewed. It could also delay giving a verdict by granting a time extension to allow for the survey to be carried out before making a final decision on the application.
Deeks’ move into Ardmore House is part of UCD’s plan to consolidate HR services in the Tierney Building in the centre of campus. UCD HR currently operates out of Roebuck Castle. UCD plans to demolish ‘poorly configured and inaccessible accommodation’ to the rear of Ardmore House across three storeys. Ongoing plans envisage stripping out the basement for open plan offices and meeting rooms. Deeks wants to move into the new office by the end of 2018.
The Private Club at O’Reilly Hall
UCD President Andrew Deeks’ number one building project on campus is yet to begin. Planning permission was granted last April, subject to a number of conditions. UCD’s first application for a revised Fire Safety Certificate was rejected back in October for failing to ‘provide adequate information to enable the authority to assess the proposal.’ A new application was made in November, with a decision due date of the 25th January 2018. The Council has granted a time extension to the decision, leaving the project on hold. UCD is also waiting on a Disability Access Certificate. It needs the two documents before construction can begin.
UCD Residences Masterplan
The first two phases got the go ahead from An Bord Pleanala. UCD pre-emptively applied to the Council for Fire Safety Certificates for buildings involved in the project. The Council has granted time extensions for the Fulcrum Building, Block D and Block E. It is still awaiting news on its application for a Disability Access Certificate for the Fulcrum Building.
Cian Carton – Editor