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Draft local area plan consultations to take place at SkyCourt

A SERIES of public consultations in relation to the Draft Shannon Town and Environs Local Area Plan 2012-2018 will take place next week.
This is the first stand-alone town plan to be produced for Shannon and it was put on public display last month.
Public consultations will take place at Unit A16 (Shaney Macs) at SkyCourt on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday from 2pm to 5.30pm and again on Thursday, January 19 from 3pm until 7.30pm. Another public consultation will be held at Rineanna House in the Shannon Free Zone on Friday, January 20 from 12.30pm to 3.30pm.
Councillor Gerry Flynn, chairperson of the Shannon Electoral Area said a chance is being offered to members of the public to influence the future of their town. “The public consultation process presents members of the public with a valuable opportunity to have their say on the future development of their local community. I would encourage people from Shannon and its environs to inspect the Draft Local Area Plan before the submission deadline of February 1. They will not get a better opportunity than over the next few weeks to influence the future economic and social development of their town and community.”
Mayor of Shannon Mary Brennan also urged people to attend one of the events. “The preparation of a new plan for Shannon and Environs is very positive news and I would encourage the people of Shannon to engage with the process. If you have any queries, council officials will be on hand to answer any questions during the public consultation sessions.”
For the first time, there will be a strong focus on consulting with children and the council hopes to visit primary and post-primary schools as part of the process. The initiative to secure, to a greater degree, the views of children arises from a change inserted in the Planning and Development (Amendment) Act 2010, which encourages submissions from children or groups or associations representing the interests of children. 
Senior planner, Gordon Daly commented, “The views and perspectives of younger people and children are invaluable. They are the future of any community and encouraging civic awareness at an early age can only be a good thing.  We are pleased to be doing this for the new Shannon Town and Environs Local Area Plan.”
The council has adopted an innovative approach for the location of the public consultation events by choosing to occupy a vacant unit in the SkyCourt Shopping Centre.
The Draft Local Area Plan and associated SEA Environmental Report and Habitats Directive Assessment are available on the council’s website at www.clarecoco.ie. The draft plan can also be viewed during normal working hours from Monday to Friday until Wednesday, February 1 at the following locations: Shannon Town Council, Town Hall, Shannon;  Clare County Council Offices, Planning, Land Use and Transportation, New Road, Ennis; Sean Lemass Library, Shannon; de Valera Library, Ennis and Local Study Centre, Harmony Row, Ennis.
A copy of the Draft Local Area Plan may also be purchased at the offices of Clare County Council and area offices of Shannon.
Written submissions and observations (two copies) with respect to the Draft Local Area Plan and/or its accompanying SEA and HDA may be made to the Forward Planning Unit, Planning Department, Clare County Council, Áras Contae an Chláir, New Road, Ennis, County Clare or by email to forwardplan@clarecoco.ie (maximum document size by email is 4MB) or may be faxed to 065 6892071 on or before 4pm on Wednesday, February 1.


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