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Tag Archives: An Bord Pleanála

Locals Raise Concerns Over East Clare Wind Farm Consultations

CONCERNS are being voiced in Bodyke about the nature of the consultation process surrounding a multimillion Euro wind farm proposed for the slopes of Slieve Bernagh in East Clare. In recent weeks, a Facebook page, called ‘Bodyke Voice on Wind Farm’ has been set up by people in the community to facilitate discussion. One of those raising awareness of the project, Susan McMahon of the Cobbler’s Rest, has used the page to publish responses from the developer, Coillte, to a series of detailed questions, some of which focus on a perceived lack of consultation with the wider community. “I have no agenda on this,” Ms McMahon told The Champion. “I’m not trying to rally the forces or influence people one way or another on this project. I’m not against green energy, I’m in favour of it, but, I do feel we have been brushed aside in terms of consultation.” The publican outlined how she had learned, by word of mouth, …

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Advance Works Set to Start on Killaloe Bridge and Bypass Project

THE time-line for awarding the contract to build the new multimillion Euro Killaloe Bridge and Bypass has slipped slightly from its original target, The Champion has learned, with the likelihood that the three-part project may not now be completed until 2024. Works to progress the project, which also includes improvements to the R494, have continued despite Covid-19 restrictions, with the Project Steering Group, lead by Clare County Council, meeting remotely in April and May. In response to a query from The Champion, the local authority has outlined a time-frame indicating it expects the contract for the main works to be awarded at the end of March next year, with construction taking a further three years to complete. The most recent update available previously was as briefing to members of the Killaloe Municipal District which indicated that contracts would be awarded before the end of 2020, with a target completion date of late 2022. “The Project Team … are close to …

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Further Delay With Flood Defences for Springfield, Clonlara

DISAPPOINTMENT has been expressed in Springfield, Clonlara, after a further delay with relief works designed to save residents from a repeat of devastating flooding that has forced them out of their homes multiple times over the last 15 years. Planning for flood protection works began in early 2016, after more than 10 families had to evacuate their properties and a further five had their access roads completely cut off. Since then, the proposed €1.2 million works have hit a number of hurdles, and it has now been confirmed that rather than going through an internal local authority adjudication process, the plans will now go to An Bord Pleanála. Senior Engineer with Clare County Council, Seán Lenihan told authority members this month that the nature of the works could not be contained, as had been anticipated, within a Part Eight application. “They require an EIAR (Environmental Impact Assessment Report) and an EIS (Environmental Impact Statement),” he explained, adding that the application …

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East Clare wind farm planning application to be lodged in June

PLANS for a multimillion Euro East Clare wind farm are to be lodged next month, The Clare Champion has learned. Coillte has confirmed that it is currently finalising an application for 19 turbines on a 750 hectare site, around a-mile-and-a-half from Bodyke, on the slopes of Slieve Bearnagh. The proposal, which will seek 30-year permission for The Carrownagowan Wind Farm, will be lodged directly to An Bórd Pleanála as strategic infrastructure. “Our project team is targeting a submission date towards the end of June and this will be advertised prior to final submission,” outlined Andy Fox, Community Engagement Manager with Coillte. Mr Fox also noted that a detailed brochure on the project had recently been widely distributed across East Clare, and that consultations were continuing, in line with the restrictions imposed by Covid-19. The site is described by Coillte as an appropriate location to access the national grid via the substation at Ardnacrusha. The company also notes it is designated …

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Appeal over development planned for ‘landmark’ Tulla site

THE developers of a landmark site in Tulla have taken issue with a number of conditions imposed by county planners on a mixed-use residential, retail and commercial project proposed for one of the main approaches to the town. The €4.5 million development is one of a number of housing projects in prospect for Tulla, but the company behind it is now asking the planning appeals board to remove two conditions, which it considers to be overly restrictive. Woodhaven Developments Ltd. secured permission, last February, to develop the site of the former St Joseph’s Secondary School, which has been vacant for several years. The lands, which are just under three acres, and are owned by Woodhaven, are zoned for mixed use and identified by Clare County Council as an “opportunity site” on the outskirts of the town at the junction of Chapel Street and the R462. The Ennis-based company is proposing to construct a mixed-use building with two shops and two …

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Councillor Cooney receives assurances over Tulla social housing concerns

RESIDENTS of Tulla have been commended for highlighting issues of concern with a proposed social housing development which has just secured permission for a site at Doonaun on the outskirts of the village. The 25-home development, represents an investment of around €6 million, and was approved at this month’s meeting of Clare County Council. The proposals were the subject of 17 local objections – one of which included a petition signed by 45 local residents. Speaking to The Champion, Councillor Joe Cooney paid tribute to the efforts of the residents to work with elected representatives on identifying issues and said he believed these had now been addressed. “I am aware that residents had concerns and I met with them to hear their views,” Councillor Cooney said. “I would like to compliment residents on making their views known so that we, as local representatives, could refer these back to the local authority and have them addressed.” Among the issues raised was …

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Green light for Tulla social housing development

A CONTROVERSIAL social housing development for Tulla is to proceed, after the approval of a Part 8 planning application at this month’s meeting of Clare County Council. The scheme will see 22 homes built at a site in Doonaun in a mix of apartments and houses. The green light was given despite 17 local objections – one of which included a petition signed by 45 local residents – and the decision of Councillor Pat Hayes to vote against the application, when it came before local authority members. The scheme was the subject of some controversy earlier this year when a number of residents sought what is known a ‘screening determination’ from An Bord Pleanála, insisting that the local authority should have submitted a full Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) with the plans. Other residents made submissions directly to the council citing concerns over flooding, the capacity of water services, infringement of privacy and noise disturbance that might be created because of …

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Shannon Councillor slams An Bord Pleanála after Aldi refusal

COUNCILLOR Gerry Flynn has criticised An Bord Pleanála after it rejected the advice of its own inspector, to turn down Aldi’s application for a store in Shannon. He said it is not the first time the body has done something like this regarding a Shannon proposal. “That has happened before, if you remember, it was the same with the crematorium. I don’t know why they have inspectors at all, the powers that be seem to see them as surplus to requirements at time. If an inspector comes out that has the knowledge and expertise to make a decision on a proposal, would you not think that this is the expert you have to listen to? “The board can say that even though you went out and did your job and gave us your recommendation, we have the power to overturn it and we can decide yay or nay. It’s a regular occurrence that an inspector’s report can be overturned or …

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