Cathal Goan: part of site may go

Cash-strapped state broadcaster RTE is considering offloading some, if not all, of its 46-acre Montrose campus in Donnybrook, Dublin 4.

Documents seen by the Sunday Tribune show that RTE wants its land rezoned by Dublin City Council to allow mixed-use development on the site, predominantly office, shops and residential.

"The appropriate and sensitive long-term redevelopment" of the site could assist in reinvigorating Donnybrook, wrote RTE's chief financial officer Conor Hayes. "As we see it, such a development direction could result in increased population, additional public facilities (and) enhanced employment opportunities," he added.

The broadcaster believes the site could "integrate with adjoining streets and amenities" and asked for the mixed-use zoning to be put in place when the new city development plan comes in in 2011.

"There are no immediate plans, particularly in the current environment" in relation to Montrose, said an RTE spokesman. RTE is facing a substantial deficit this year and also has to pay towards digital terrestrial television.

The Montrose site is zoned for "future institutional and community uses". One of the uses may be housing, but 25% must be set aside for open or community facilities.