A plan to redevelop Dublin's Victorian fruit and vegetable market has received the backing of city centre councillors.

Dublin City Council has put aside €3m to develop a food market similar to London's Covent Garden.

A meeting of the Central Area Committee heard that a planning application will be ready next week and will then go for public consultation.

Executive Manager of the Council Jim Keogan told the meeting it is hoped that construction will start in November this year and that the redevelopment will be completed by September 2015.

The market, which is in the north inner city behind the Four Courts, is currently used only by wholesalers.

The redevelopment plan hopes to convert half of the market into a space for artisan food producers and cafes. 

The Dublin City Business Association had been pushing for the market regeneration to proceed on its own.

The association's CEO David Brennan said there are an estimated 80,000 people living in the vicinity of the market.

Mr Brennan added that redevelopment could encourage more businesses to move to the area and in the process refurbish some of empty buildings in the area.

The new market will be run by a management company appointed by Dublin City Council and overseen by a special markets committee of councillors.

Mr Keogan told the meeting that the project will hopefully receive the final go ahead in June following a period of public consultation.

The redevelopment project also needs to be ratified by a full meeting of councillors in order to proceed.