AN extension of planning permission to allow for the completion of a new multi-storey block and a multi-deck car park at Westpark has been refused by Clare County Council.
FGPO Ireland Limited Partnership had sought to extend the appropriate period of planning permission for the development of what would have been Block 6000, a mix-used multi-storey block.
The plans were for a building with a gross internal area of 12,045 square metres, with offices on the three upper floors and data centre/light industrial/storage/Research & Development uses on the bottom two floors.
It also included plans for an ancillary, multi-deck car park, located to the south of Block 4000, within the campus. This was to have 580 spaces and was intended to replace two existing car parks.
A document submitted as part of the application said that much work has already been completed within the Westpark campus.
“Extensive and substantial works have been completed in respect of the wider campus with the construction of most of the campus’ central and perimeter open space, drainage and road network, Blocks 3000, 4000, and 7000 (which are occupied) as well as the substantial ground and basement level structures on Block 2000 and 3000,” the submission stated.
It claimed that given what it called “the integrated nature of tte development within the wider campus” an extension of time should be granted.
The application also said that circumstances related to the pandemic, beyond the control of the applicant, had been a factor behind the non-completion within the allotted time.
If the extension was granted it forecast that work would be completed by the end of October 2024, while it requested that permission be extended until two months afterwards, December 31, 2024.
However in the Council planner’s report, it found that allowing the extension would not be in compliance with regulations.
“The application does not comply with the relevant requirements stated in Section 42 of the Planning and Development Act 2000, as amended.
“Having regard to the provisions of Section 42 (1)(a)(i) of the Planning and Development Act 2000, as amended, the Planning Authority is not satisfied that the development to which permission 17-583 (the original planning application which the applicants asked to be extended) would be commenced before the expiration of the appropriate period sought to be extended nor have substantial works been carried out pursuant to the permission during the appropriate period.
“Having regard to the above, an extension of the appropriate period of planning reference 17-583 is not permitted.”
Owen Ryan has been a journalist with the Clare Champion since 2007, having previously worked for a number of other regional titles in Limerick, Galway and Cork.