An Bord Pleanála (www.pleanala.ie) will be announcing whether IKEA (www.ikea.com), the Swedish furniture company, will be allowed to build their 30,000sq m superstore at Ballymun in Dublin. Last October it was planning permission was approved by Fingal County Council, which was subsequently appealed (by a number of bodies, including the Greens) . In Ireland there is a regulatory restriction on the maximum floor space a retail premises can be. And this would be the main reason for stopping IKEA opening a store in Ireland. Because of their methods of operation, a store would need to be of this size to be viable. They cite storing and displaying their goods as the reason why such a large floorspace is needed. If this store goes ahead, it could bring up to 500 jobs in the Ballymun area (which it has to be said would be welcomed with open arms).
So why is there such a problem with this rule ? Is it the lobbying from the small trades organisations ? Do they feel that they business is in jeopardy ? IKEA can offer great things to the Irish economy namely jobs and the availability of affordable furniture. Here is a typical example where the powers that be have been shooting themselves in the foot, with the topic of job creation. The mind boggles ! So with the new government having the Green Party on board, this saga might be drawn out for a bit longer.
EDIT : More in-depth can be found here : Irish Town Planners Blog