A CLARE County Council decision to grant planning permission for 51 houses at Ballynacragga, Newmarket-on-Fergus has been overturned by An Bord Pleanála.
An appeal against the decision was made by a group called Concerned Ballynacragga Residents. A report from An Bord Pleanála inspector Irene McCormack set out a number of issues. “It is considered that the proposed development would be premature by reference to the existing deficiencies in the Newmarket-on-Fergus wastewater treatment plant to which connection is proposed and the period within which this constraint may reasonably be expected to cease. The proposed development would, therefore, be prejudicial to public health and would be contrary to the proper planning and sustainable development of the area,” she wrote.
Ms McCormack also found that the Board could not be satisfied that the development would not have a significant effect on the Lough Gash River Special Area of Conservation. Thirdly she stated that, “It is considered that the development as proposed fails to adequately address the natural topography of site and the manipulation of the existing site levels to accommodate the development would seriously injure the visual amenities of the area, the character of the landscape and the quality of the development layout, in particular, public and private open spaces, residential amenity and the impact on adjoining properties and would result in a poor design layout that is unimaginative and substandard.
“The proposed development, accordingly, would be contrary to the proper planning and sustainable development of the area.” In the original application a description of the location of the proposed development was given. It said it was “to be located on a 2.7ha greenfield site approximately 800m to the northwest of Newmarket Village Centre. “The site is bordered to the north, south and east by other existing residential developments. Lough Gash (point of proposed stormwater discharge) is located circa 370m south of the proposed development.”
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.