Published: Thu, October 12, 2017
Global Media | By Meredith Barber

Apple get go-ahead to build data centre in Athenry

Apple get go-ahead to build data centre in Athenry

The construction of the 166,000 sqm data centre is expected to generate up to 300 jobs during the different phases of expansion.

"Today's decision has been a great decision for Athenry and the whole west of Ireland", he said.

In 2015, Apple had also announced plans to build a new data center in Denmark, which will begin operations later this year.

Athenry for Apple founder Paul Keane, who attended the court today, claims that Daly and Fitzpatrick's legal teams initially sought leave of a couple of weeks to mount an appeal, and he views the fact that this request was not granted as a positive sign. Keane told Business Insider that Irish laws need to be changed to prevent similar delays in the future. All looked good when the company was granted the "final" go-ahead last summer, until three residents filed a High Court appeal.

The project has proved hugely divisive in the town of Athenry, with supporters hailing the economic benefits of having a company like Apple set up shop there, while objectors have repeatedly raised environmental concerns about the build.

"Every subsequent delay we have, whether it's through our appeals system, through our local authorities, through An Bord Pleanála or then when it goes through the courts, every subsequent delay to a project reduces its overall viability", she said. The Danish site is understood to be already up and running.

ABP's involvement in the planning process followed environmental objections raised against Galway County Council's decision to give Apple conditional consent to proceed with the project in September 2015.

Following oral hearings the planning authority confirmed the permission in August of a year ago.

Tech giant Apple can now proceed with its €850m data centre in Athenry as the Commercial Court in Dublin has backed An Bord Pleanála's original decision to grant planning permission.

Up to 2,000 residents marched through Athenry in support of the data centre development back in November 2016.

Apple has its European headquarters in Ireland and employs thousands of people in Cork, roughly two hours drive from Athenry.

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