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Sentinel Resi Development Gets Go-Ahead, Ending 15-Year Blight On Landscape

Comer has won planning permission for a 110-apartment scheme at the Sentinel.

Dún Laoghaire Rathdown County Council has granted planning permission to the Comer Group to convert the infamous Sentinel tower building at Sandyford, south Dublin, into 110 apartments.

The development previously had planning approval for office use but will now form part of a wider regeneration of the area. This includes up to 530 apartments in Sandyford Business District, Dublin 18, finally completing a half-finished tower that has been a blot on the Dublin skyline for over 15 years.

The development plan also includes a roof terrace communal space, residents’ community rooms and a residents’ gym, plus the addition of two storeys to the six-storey section of the building. Bike, motorbike and car parking is at basement level, including electric vehicle charging points, plus bike parking on the ground floor. It will comprise 60 two-bed units, 22 one-bed and 28 three-bed units.

It is not yet known when Comer subsidiary Dante Property will start construction or whether it will be brought to market as it is with planning in place. 

Comer has already begun building work on 428 units at the Rockbrook site that it purchased from Ires Reit earlier this year, and it submitted the Sentinel for planning consent at the end of July.

That sites are connected underground, and the two properties were originally part of a plot being developed by Cork-based John Fleming in the 2000s after his company, Tivway, paid €245M for an 11.3-acre Sandyford site, with the tower set to be at its centre.

Work began on the Sentinel in 2007, but construction halted the following year after Tivway ran into financial troubles, and only the outer shell was completed. After the Supreme Court rejected a rescue plan for Tivway, the company collapsed in 2010 owing banks more than €1B.

Comer acquired the Sentinel in 2011 for just €850K and originally intended to redevelop the tower as 294 office suites, but lacked access to, and ownership of, its part of the basement car park. 

As a result, it has been left as an unfinished shell ever since.

The new Rockbrook apartments will be built in two blocks. The site also adjoins Sandyford Central, where Richmond Homes is nearing completion of 564 apartments across six blocks ranging in height from 10 to 17 storeys.