Over 400 homes in Limerick in doubt following ESB’s refusal to part with land parcel

The ESB have refused to part with their land in Rosbrien.

THE BUILDING of over 400 homes in Rosbrien is in doubt after the ESB has refused to hand over a parcel of land to the Land Development Agency (LDA), the Limerick Post can confirm.

A 5.3 hectare ESB-owned site in Rosbrien was identified in the LDA’s Report on Relevant Lands, and had the potential to create 410 homes, however the ESB has not consented to the transfer of ownership of the lands.

The Department of the Environment recently informed the government that neither the ESB nor itself consented to the transfer of ownership to the LDA.

The LDA’s report stated that the site had the potential to hold 410 homes and estimated that the cost to develop the site would be around €121million.

The site was considered to be Class 3 in the report, meaning that no specific timeframe existed as to when development could take please.

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However, in a memo from early March, reported in the Irish Examiner, the Department of the Environment said that it may “be timely to remove all reference” to the site in Rosbrien, as well as three other ESB sites across the country, “until such time as any agreement with the ESB has been finalised”.

The other three sites are the Marina Generating Station in Cork, a site next to an ESB substation on the Grand Canal Lane in Dublin, and land at Sean Mulvey Road in Galway.

In the memo, the Department of the Environment said that “no commitments were ever given to transfer, only to explore possible transfers”.

“The department cannot compel the ESB to sell any of its sites to the LDA.”

The LDA said in a statement that it has a “positive working relationship” with the ESB, and the two are “engaging collaboratively on a number of sites.”

The LDA is currently prioritising a number of sites in Limerick for the delivery of affordable housing including Carey’s Road and St Joseph’s Hospital, which are part of the Colbert Quarter,” the statement continued.

“The agency is also working in partnership with Limerick City and County Council on the delivery of over 180 homes in Mungret while construction is ongoing on 81 cost rental apartments in The Mills in Castletroy.”

The LDA acknowledged that it “currently has no powers to compel” to ESB in the transfer, and that “the issue of compellability is a matter for government”.

In a statement to the Limerick Post, a spokesperson for the ESB said that the State-owned electricity company “is in ongoing discussions with the LDA and all such discussions are commercially sensitive”.