Court ruling in favour of Athenry Apple datacentre

Court ruling in favour of Athenry Apple datacentre

The case will be mentioned again next week and the opposing residents may yet appeal today's decision, but Mr Doherty says that's for another day and he hopes today's result will lead to more investment in the west.

The data centre is expected to cost €850 million (£762 million) and create over 100 new jobs.

The objectors are two local residents who cite environmental concerns about the proposed facility, which would be situated in Derrydonnell Forest, around three miles from Athenry. However, by November previous year, three objectors - local residents Sinéad Fitzpatrick and Allan Daly, and Wicklow landowner Brian McDonagh - received permission to seek a full judicial review of the Apple decision by An Bord Pleanála.

Apple intends to use the data centre to store European user data from services such as iMessage, iTunes and the App store.

Apple first announced the data centre in February 2015.

Ireland's High Court dismissed two appeals against building the centre while the company announced they will be building a similar centre in Denmark. The Danish site is understood to be already up and running.

Computer Weekly contacted Apple for a statement, seeking clarification on when it plans to begin the build, but had received no response at the time of publication. However, the first hearing in June was delayed by a week, then it was held back to 27 July, with the final decision emerging today (12 October).

Galway County Council granted permission in Sept 2015 but that was appealed to An Bord Pleanála.

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

However, Business Insider reports that Ireland's top court has now heard the case and ruled in Apple's favor, allowing the project to go ahead. That board in turn approved the project, but further objections were made to the High Court in Ireland.

Ireland's global business reputation has been damaged by delays to the Apple data centre in Athenry, according to IBEC. This prompted 2,000 local people from Athenry to march in support of the data centre a year ago.

Apple did not immediately respond to Business Insider's request for comment.