Cairn Homes has lodged planning documentation with An Bord Pleanála signalling its intention to build 611 apartments and three townhouses on the site in Dublin that it purchased from RTÉ for €107.5m over two years ago.

The number of units planned is 105 - or 20.6% - higher than the original 500 apartments and nine homes the company initially indicated it would construct on the 8.64 acre site in Donnybrook after its purchase of the land in June 2017.

The site was sold at 43% above the guide price of €75m.

In a notice published by An Bord Pleanála, Cairn Homes plans include 611 apartments, three townhouses, one childcare facility and a private residents member's club and gym.

A nine-week long pre-planning consultation process now begins.

This will involve Dublin City Council planners and at the end of the consultation, An Bord Pleanála will provide an "opinion" on the development.

It is then open to Cairn Homes to take into account the views expressed by the appeals board before lodging an application direct to An Bord Pleanála under fast-track planning rules.

The Strategic Housing Development (SHD) rules allow developers to bypass local authorities and have their applications decided by the board.

The move can save a year or more in the time required to have large-scale planning applications decided upon.

Third parties cannot make submissions on pre-planning consultations but when Cairn Homes lodges its planning application, all documentation in relation to the pre-planning will be available to view and third parties will then be able to lodge submissions.

Before the 2017 deal, Cairn Homes CEO Michael Stanley said: "If an opportunity like the RTÉ site comes along, it's a once-in-a-lifetime chance to acquire a site of that quality".

Last March, he said the firm hopes to commence construction on the site in 2020.