The grounds of appeal as set out in the notice of appeal were that the rates are “excessive, inequitable, bad in law, not designated, poor location, quantum allowance.”
The decision is being seen as recognition that Cows Lane is not living up to the expectations of Dublin’s version of Covent Garden that were held out when Minister for Environment Noel Dempsey opened the area just over one year ago.
Traders in the area say the lack of anchor attractions on the newest section of Temple Bar means that visitors in sufficient numbers have failed to materialize.
In particular, the Old City Traders Group, which represents about 20 shopkeepers and artists in the area, says the lack of a sculpture feature at the junction of Cows Lane and Lord Edward Street means that passersby are unaware of the pedestrian area.
The Valuation Tribunal found that “although the parties debated the relevant failure statistics . . . the reality was that the existing net annual values were not reflected in the trading realities on the street and that the entire development would be history unless action was taken”.
The Tribunal also noted that Cows Lane is located on the western side of the city, not on any street map and does not benefit from significant footfall or passing trade.”