16.7.2 Height Limits and Areas for Low-Rise, MidRise and Taller Development* (See Building Height in Dublin)

Height Limits and Areas for Low-Rise, MidRise and Taller Development* (See Building Height in Dublin)

1. Planning applications will be assessed against the building heights and development principles established in a relevant LAP/SDZ/SDRA. Proposals for high buildings should be in accordance with the provisions of the relevant LAP/SDZ/SDRA in addition to the assessment criteria for high buildings and development plan standards. Chapter 15 provides guiding principles for the design of potential high buildings in SDRAs, where appropriate.

All areas outlined in the table below are considered to be in the low-rise category unless the provisions of a LAP/SDZ/SDRA indicate otherwise.

2. Height is presented in metres in the table below rather than storeys to take account of different floor-toceiling heights applicable to different uses which could result in a disjointed streetscape. For example, 28 m equates to 9 storeys residential or 7 storeys office generally, but may be different for specific uses such as hospitals (see section In similar vein, 16 m equates to 5 storeys residential or 4 commercial generally, and 50 m is the equivalent to 16 storeys residential or 12 storeys commercial.

The height definition is based on an average storey height of 3.0 m for residential development and 4.0 m for commercial development. Ground floors should be commercial height for design, use and adaptability reasons in all areas. Where required, the scale of plant at roof level should be minimised and have a suitable finish or screening so that it is discreet and unobtrusive.

Plant, flues and lift overruns should not be included in the height of the building, as long as they are set back and properly screened and do not significantly add to the shadowing or otherwise of natural light beyond that of the main structure.

The heights stated in the low-rise and mid-rise categories of the table below, Building Height in Dublin, are maximum heights. Notwithstanding the maximum permissible heights specified in this section, proposals will be subject to assessment against standards set out elsewhere in the development plan, as will proposals in the high rise category.

3. Rail hubs are within 500 m of existing and proposed Luas, mainline, DART, DART Underground and Metro stations.

Phibsborough will remain a low rise area with the exception of allowing for (i) up to a max of 19 m in the centre of the Smurfit site and immediately adjoining the proposed railway station at Cross Guns Bridge; and (ii) the addition of one additional storey of 4 m will be considered in relation to any proposals to reclad the existing ‘tower’ at the Phibsboro Shopping Centre.

Pre-existing height in low-rise areas

Where a site has a pre-existing height over that stipulated above, a building of the same number of storeys may be permitted, subject to assessment against the standards set out elsewhere in the development plan and the submission of an urban design statement outlining: ­

  • The context with a site and area analysis which includes an appraisal of the character of the area adjoining the site ­
  • The design principles which have been applied and how these will be translated to the development in terms of response to local character, layout, density, scale, landscape, visual appearance and impact on amenities, including sunlight ­
  • Drawings, perspectives and photomontages to demonstrate how the approach has been applied.     

Assessment Criteria for Higher Buildings

All proposals for mid-rise and taller buildings must have regard to the assessment criteria for high buildings as set out below: ­

  • Relationship to context, including topography, built form, and skyline having regard to the need to protect important views, landmarks, prospects and vistas ­
  • Effect on the historic environment at a city-wide and local level ­ Relationship to transport infrastructure, particularly public transport provision ­
  • Architectural excellence of a building which is of slender proportions, whereby a slenderness ratio of 3:1 or more should be aimed for ­
  • Contribution to public spaces and facilities, including the mix of uses
  • Effect on the local environment, including micro-climate and general amenity considerations
  • Contribution to permeability and legibility of the site and wider area ­
  • Sufficient accompanying material to enable a proper assessment, including urban design study/masterplan, a 360 degree view analysis, shadow impact assessment, wind impact analysis, details of signage, branding and lighting, and relative height studies ­
  • Adoption of best practice guidance related to the sustainable design and construction of tall buildings ­
  • Evaluation of providing a similar level of density in an alternative urban form.