Three Starbucks cafes that opened for business in Cork’s city centre over the past 12 months do not have the proper planning permission, according to An Bord Pleanála, the quasi-judicial body that examines planning decision appeals in Ireland.
The Cork City Council received several complaints after the three Starbucks outlets opened in Emmet Place, Patrick Street, and Princes Street. An investigation by building control officers confirmed that no planning permission had ever been sought for any of the shops.
Cork City Council commenced discussions with Starbucks central management, and it is understood that the company’s position is that no planning permission was needed for any of the outlets.
An Bord Pleanála, however, has ruled that planning permission is required in this instance because the stores represent a change of use.
In July 2015 local residents and historians expressed concern when a Starbucks café was opened at the Queen Anne House at the corner of Emmet Place and Opera Lane in the centre of the city. The historic property is currently the site of a retail shop, but the façade has been left untouched.