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Schools continuing to expand

The expansion of national schools in South-East Clare is reflected in two separate planning applications for an extension to existing accommodation.

The Board of Management of St John’s National School, Cratloe, has lodged a planning application with Clare County Council for the construction of a standalone single extension to the rear of the existing school, incorporating two classrooms, three resource rooms and associated areas and site works, including the removal of three existing prefabs.

St John’s National School is currently located on a site of about .609 hectares. Plans for the proposed development have been submitted to the council by Richard Rice of Healy Partners Architects.

The Board of Management at Meelick National School has made a separate planning application for planning permission to demolish a section of the existing building and construct a new extension, as well as demolishing the existing water tower on site, with all necessary ancillary services.

A site suitability assessment report was prepared by Gerard McGrath, Project Design and Building Consultants Limited, O’Dea’s Road, Kilrush, which included information on the Killeely tributary north of the Shannon Estuary. This identified the overall status of the waterbody is poor, is at risk of pollution and there is an objective to restore it to a proper status by 2021.

It is now a statutory requirement to obtain planning permission for the replacement of a septic tank and percolation area with a wastewater treatment system, according to a Department of Environment Guidance Note on the design of wastewater treatment systems for use in schools dated February 2011.

In order to maximise the efficiency of water usage in schools the Department of Education provided grant aid for the upgrade of water utilities and appliances to conserve water in all schools. However, this grant scheme has now ended.

Preliminary figures for wastewater usage at the school suggest a range from nine to 15 flow litres per person daily. However, until the Department of the Environment has agreed these figures with the Environmental Protection Agency, a design flow of 20 litres daily will have to be used as the basis of calculations for the design of waste water treatment systems.

Details of a Puraflo Peat Biofilter System were also provided as part of planning documents submitted to the council.

An invoice for €7,939 to cover the cost of the Puraflo Wastewater Treatment Plant Proposal for the school including VAT was also submitted to the council.


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