A plan for an apartment complex of 725 units in blocks up to 14 storeys high has been given the go ahead by An Bord Pleanála for Ashtown in Dublin.

The proposal for 'Rathborne' by a company operated by developer Joe O'Reilly more than doubles the number of apartments allowed in a permission given four years ago for the site beside the Royal Canal.

The application from Ruirside Development went to the planning board as a Strategic Housing Development, bypassing Dublin City Council.

The council's planners made a submission recommending a refusal because of the height, density and effect on residential amenity.

An Bord Pleanála said the scheme could contravene the Dublin City Development Plan but pointed to height and density guidelines introduced by the government in 2018 which can override local authority plans.

It said the site which is near Ashtown railway station "is considered to be of strategic and national importance".

The planning board also stated that the plan "would constitute an acceptable quantum and density of development in this accessible urban location, would not seriously injure the residential or visual amenities of the area, would be acceptable in terms of urban design, height and quantum of development".

The plan is for six apartment blocks with two being 14 storeys, two 12 storeys and two blocks up to six and seven storeys.

The vast majority of the units will be one and two-beds, with just 16 three-beds in the complex.

Developer Joe O'Reilly is reported to have bought the site from Capel Developments for around €22 million last year after selling it to the same company for over €70m in 2006.

Capel Developments went into receivership before previous permission was granted for the site involving 296 apartments in three blocks up to six storeys.