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Tag Archives: county development plan

‘Fear factor’ is driving a rush of rural planning applications, says councillor

ALARM at the potential impact of forthcoming guidelines on development in rural areas has prompted a rush of planning applications, an East Clare councillor has said. Councillor Pat Hayes said that, after members of the local authority secured a seven-month deferral of the next County Development Plan (2022-2028), those looking to build in rural areas are keen to lodge their applications before the new and potentially more restrictive regulations come into force. At the end of June, councillors unanimously backed a motion to defer the new plan on the basis that Covid-19 had significantly disrupted the public consultation process. The move was seen as a pragmatic response, not just to the pandemic, but to national policies, of which the plan will have to take account. Several rural councillors have made no secret of their concerns that some elements of the National Planning Framework (NPF) and the Regional Spatial and Economic Strategy (RSES) could do irrevocable damage to rural areas. “There …

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Negative impact downplayed after county plan deferral

THE possible negative impact of the deferral the new County Development Plan (2022-2028) for seven months has been played down by the councillor who proposed the move. Councillor Cillian Murphy, who tabled the motion to invoke a new law that takes account of the impact of Covid-19, said that the net delay will be just three months. He added that the deferral is an opportunity to final alternatives to national policies that many fear will do irrevocable damage to rural areas. Last week, the deferral secured unanimous support, with some concerns raised about the potential impact on the county town, which will see both its Local Area Plan (LAP) and Ennis 2040 strategy deferred. “Because the Forward Planning team had actually started the County Development Plan process early, what we’re looking at, in real terms, is a delay of around three months,” Councillor Murphy told The Champion. “I respect the concerns of Ennis members but I don’t believe this will …

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Councillors buy time for new Clare development plan

A BID to buy more time to thrash out controversial aspects of the new development plan for Clare has been successful. At a special local authority meeting on Wednesday, a motion invoking new legislation that makes provision for the disruption caused by the pandemic led to the granting of an additional seven months to finalise the blueprint. While the extension of time was granted in strict compliance with the provisions of the Planning and Development (Amendment) Act, 2021, several council members have pledged  to use the additional time to ensure the new plan is as favourable as possible in terms of the development of rural Clare. There were some dissenting voices from the Ennis district with two members reluctantly backing the extension and expressing reservations about potential delays in major projects for the county town. At the council’s July meeting, 11 members had tabled a motion seeking a stay on the plan for 12 months. Councillors Murphy, Hayes, Cooney, Gerry …

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West Clare councillors demand clarity on population growth targets

ANGER has been expressed by West Clare councillors over national planning policies which they fear will stifle population growth. Tabling a joint motion at the recent municipal district meeting, Councillors Cillian Murphy, Ian Lynch, Shane Talty and Joe Garrihy sought details of population growth targets under the forthcoming County Development Plan. All voiced frustration at the reply, which was described as “a non-response”. “We’ve been briefed on now the new plan will have to tie in with the regional spatial strategy and so we’re now looking for clarity on the population allocation for West Clare,” Councillor Murphy said. “It’s kind of mind-boggling that any national policy would restrict any county’s ambition to develop. We are the district most likely to be affected if Ennis gets city status. That puts the development focus on the Limerick-Shannon-Ennis corridor. We have to question where we will get a chance to be ambitious for the growth of our area.” Councillor Lynch described as “a …

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Concerns raised over possible de-zoning of council land

THE risk that some lands owned by council could drop substantially in value, because of new national planning policies, has been flagged by a member of the West Clare Municipal District. Councillor Cillian Murphy told a meeting of the district committee that huge opportunity presented by the pandemic to bring people back to rural Clare could be lost if lands have to be zoned under the terms of the National Planning Framework (NPF), which will shape the forthcoming county development plan. The Fianna Fáil member asked the authority for details of all lands owned by the local authority and details of their zoning, whether residential, industrial or residential. “The impetus for this,” he explained, “is that we need to look at what lands the council owns in the context of the NPF. There is a huge drive from government to deliver affordable housing and a huge opportunity because of the pandemic, for people to live and work in rural Ireland.” …

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Scariff students get set to contribute to new plan for Clare

LOCAL geography has come to life for second years at Scariff Community College, where students are making a submission to a review of the County Development Plan. Under the guidance of teacher Darina Sheridan and with support from Carmel Brislane, a planner with the council, the students are making their voices heard on the future of the school’s catchment area of Scariff, Mountshannon and Whitegate. Geography teacher Darina sees the call for submissions to the plan, which will cover 2022-2028, as an opportunity for some real-world learning. “I had looked that the plan previously with a Transition Year (TY) group and realised that there was potential here for the students to look at their own areas and to get to know then and what kind of amenities they would like to see,” she explained. Working with Clare County Council, Darina began to develop practical exercises built around the submission. “We have had Zoom calls with Carmel, which were great,” she …

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Planning for the future in Clare

Clare County Council has commenced a public consultation process in relation to the newly amended Draft Clare County Development Plan 2017-2023. The Draft Plan has been placed on public display until Wednesday, October 12 and When adopted the six-year blueprint will replace the existing County Development Plan 2011-2017. It will be the seventh such plan since 1964. Cathaoirleach of Clare County Council Bill Chambers is encouraging members of the public to make themselves familiar with the details of the Draft Plan and the proposed amendments. “The Draft Plan has been the subject of an extensive consultation process involving councillors, planners and the general public during the past 18 months. The public’s input is central to the planning authority and elected members in their consideration of this important strategy, which will have a positive impact on every community in County Clare in the years ahead.” Brian McCarthy, senior planner, Clare County Council, noted that the Draft Plan has been the subject …

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Green Light for Renewable Strategy

Dan  Danaher CLARE County Council has approved a long-term strategy to harness County Clare’s renewable energy resources. The Clare County Renewable Energy Strategy 2014-2020 has been incorporated into the Clare County Development Plan following a four-week long public consultation process earlier this year. The strategy outlines the potential for a range of renewable resources, including bioenergy and anaerobic digestion, micro renewables, geothermal, solar, hydro, energy storage, onshore and offshore wind, wave and tidal energy. Mayor of Clare, Councillor Joe Arkins lauded the council for taking a “pro-active approach” to facilitating renewable energy development, as well as becoming one of the first local authorities in Ireland to incorporate such a strategy into their County Development Plan. “The development of this Strategy has been one of the primary objectives of this Council during the past 5 years and complements the ongoing implementation of Clare’s first Wind Energy Strategy, which has already been incorporated into the County Development Plan,” he said. Mayor Arkins …

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