An attempt by independent Dublin city councillors to prevent the O'Devaney Gardens development going ahead has been adjourned pending further legal advice.

The three councillors - Cieran Perry, John Lyons and Sophie Nicaullaud - want to stop the increased height and density of the O'Devaney Gardens plan which allows for a total of 1,047 homes.

They proposed a motion under Section 140 of Local Government Act which would require the chief executive to make a "rescission" of the deal with developers Bartra unless they agree to reduce the number of units to the total of 824 previously agreed.

The city council's law agent gave advice that this motion could not be acted upon as it went against a decision of An Bord Pleanála and would involve a breach of contract.

However at the monthly council meeting, Mr Perry said he did not accept the law agent's advice.

The meeting then voted by 37 to 22 to adjourn the motion pending independent legal advice which will be organised through the Protocol Committee.

Chief Executive Owen Keegan said he was keen to go ahead with the development and was disappointed that this request was "bounced" on him which was going to cause further delay and uncertainty.

The council's Executive Manager for Housing, Dave Dinnigan, said the increase in units was necessary because this part of national planning policy and the application would have been rejected by An Bord Pleanála otherwise.

He also pointed out the increased number of units meant a proportional increase in the number of social and affordable units.

An Bord Pleanála gave permission for 1,047 units consisting almost entirely of apartments in blocks up to 14 storeys high with 84% being one or two bed.

Councillors originally agreed to 50% private and 50% social and affordable.

However following controversy over the disposal of public land, the four Dublin agreement parties - Fianna Fáil, Green Party, Labour and Social Democrats - secured a commitment that a further 30% would be sold to approved housing bodies for use as cost rental units.

A spokesperson for Bartra said the sale of these units is still being negotiated.