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Aviation enthusiasts to get observation platform at Dublin Airport

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The DAA has formally applied for planning permission for the new viewing platform at the airport’s perimeter

The DAA, which flagged the potential development last year, has told Fingal County Council that the new observation facility on Old Airport Road will formalise the position of a layby at the airport’s perimeter, locally known as ‘The Mound’, that attracts so-called ‘Avgeeks’ who park up to watch aircraft landing and taking off.

“The facility will provide a comfortable and safe space on an elevated platform for the community to view aircraft movements,” the DAA has told the council.

But following a pre-planning meeting, the council has also made the DAA remove a planned coffee dock at the viewing platform.

The DAA added that the platform will offer a clear view of the airport’s south runway, 10R/28L, has well as the cross runway, 16.34, “whilst providing facilities such as shelter, seating, parking and lighting”.

Plans of the proposed ‘plane-spotting’ facility

“Aircraft observation facilities are a feature of many airports around Europe and the world,” the DAA notes in its planning application. “As well as providing a plane-spotting platform, the facilities also create an interface between the airport and the local community, helping aviation enthusiasts to engage with the airport by observing aircraft movements and airport operations.”

Dublin Airport attracts a large number of aviation enthusiasts who observe aircraft using the gateway.

Many of them are very active on social media, while the airport’s aircraft movements also regularly features on live social media streams.

“The proposed development represents a considerable planning gain for the local community and aviation enthusiasts alike,” the DAA has said in its planning application.

“It represents a significant investment in modern fit-for-purpose observation facilities and a considerable improvement on what exists currently,” it adds. “In our view, there is a clear benefit to progressing with the existing design acknowledging that this has been achieved by providing energy efficient light fixtures powered using green energy generated on-site using solar PV panels.”

Plans of the proposed ‘plane-spotting’ facility

The council had also requested that electric vehicle charging stations be installed as part of the development.

“While acknowledging the planning authority’s request for EV charging stations at this location, such a provision would require extensive site works (including connection to substations remote from the observation facility) as well as wholesale upgrades to the existing electrical services with knock on effects on both the receiving environment and project feasibility,” the DAA points out.

Today’s News in 90 seconds – 11th June 2024

The proposed development will have 22 parking spaces, including two for reduced mobility users and two for families.

Dublin Airport has a significant international network, particularly to North America. It serves cities such as Beijing, Doha, Abu Dhabi, Dubai, New York, Los Angeles, Seattle, San Francisco, Denver and a number of other long-haul routes. It also has services to destinations across Europe.

Passenger numbers at the airport are currently capped at 32 million a year under a planning condition attached almost 20 years ago to the construction of Terminal 2.

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