Permission granted for new National Maternity Hospital in Dublin

The 244-bed hospital will be located on the St Vincent's Hospital campus

Permission granted for new National Maternity Hospital in Dublin

St Vincents Hospital in Dublin. Photo: Sam Boal/

Updated at 17.45

An Bord Pleanála has granted planning permission for the new National Maternity Hospital.

The decision means work on the 244-bed hospital on the campus of St Vincent's Hospital in Dublin can now go ahead.

It will ultimately replace the existing maternity hospital at Holles St in the city centre.

In a decision published today, the board says: "Having considered alternative locations, designs and layouts, it is considered that it has been demonstrated that the proposed location and design is the most appropriate solution to satisfy the requirements in respect of Maternity care and the overall development of the St Vincent's University Hospital Campus."

The board says they do not believe the development will have any significant impact on residents or traffic.

According to the permission, the new hospital will be 5-6 storeys in height, and include an extension to the existing multi-storey car park on the campus.

Construction work is expected to take around five years, and is expected to cost around €300 million.

"Major step forward"

Today's announcement was welcomed by Health Minister Simon Harris.

In a statement, he observed: "We all know that the infrastructure at NMH is outdated and now we can now look forward to a state of the art hospital where women and their babies will enjoy comfort and privacy in a modern, purpose-built environment.

“This new hospital will cater for up to 10,000 births per annum and will radically improve maternity, gynaecology and neonatal healthcare, both at local and national level." 

The HSE, meanwhile, said today's announcement is "a significant milestone and a major step forward for women and infant’s healthcare in Ireland".

Enabling works for construction are expected to get underway this year.

The permission comes months after controversy over potential religious involvement in the new hospital.

Following several weeks of public outcry, the Religious Sisters of Charity announced it would have no involvement in the facility - either in terms of ownership or management - by giving up ownership of the St Vincent's Healthcare Group (SVHG).

Ownership of the group is to be transferred to a newly-formed company with charitable status, which will be called 'St Vincent's'.

Minister Harris added that "further work is needed to finalise the details of the legal agreement" about the State ownership of the new hospital.