Ard­ca­van houses turned down by An Bord Pleanála

Wexford People - - NEWS - By Maria Pepper

A Wex­ford busi­ness­man’s plan to build a hous­ing es­tate and two car show­rooms on the out­skirts of town in Ard­ca­van, has been halted by An Bord Pleanála which ruled that the pro­posal is con­trary to zon­ing and could lead to flood­ing and traf­fic haz­ards in the area.

Michael Hayes was granted plan­ning per­mis­sion by Wex­ford County Coun­cil for 59 houses, two car show­rooms and five com­mer­cial/light in­dus­trial units on the 18-acre site in Ard­ca­van be­side the ex­ist­ing petrol sta­tion.

But the de­ci­sion was ap­pealed to An Bord Pleanála by lo­cal res­i­dent John Mol­loy of Or­chard Close, the owner of a waste wa­ter com­pany who raised con­cerns about flood­ing as well as traf­fic haz­ard and a lack of ameni­ties. The area is zoned for com­mer­cial/mixed use.

An Bord Pleanála up­held the ap­peal and over­turned the Coun­cil’s de­ci­sion, point­ing out that the res­i­den­tial el­e­ment of the de­vel­op­ment is in con­flict with the Wex­ford Town Plan which states that res­i­den­tial projects are gen­er­ally not per­mit­ted on ‘strate­gi­cally im­por­tant lands’ un­less to meet the hous­ing needs of the fam­ily mem­bers of landown­ers, and rec­om­mends a co­or­di­nated ap­proach to res­i­den­tial projects and a pref­er­ence for de­vel­op­ing land clos­est to the core and pub­lic trans­port routes to avoid a ‘hap­haz­ard and costly ap­proach to the pro­vi­sion of so­cial and phys­i­cal in­fra­struc­ture.’

‘It is con­sid­ered that the site is lo­cated in an area which is re­mote and iso­lated from other ar­eas of con­sol­i­dated de­vel­op­ment and not in line with the or­derly ex­pan­sion of the set­tle­ment’, the board ruled.

‘Hav­ing re­gard to the sig­nif­i­cant scale of res­i­den­tial de­vel­op­ment pro­posed, the ab­sence of good pedes­trian link­ages and the lack of so­cial and com­mu­nity fa­cil­i­ties in the vicin­ity, it is con­sid­ered that the pro­posed de­vel­op­ment would be ex­ces­sively car de­pen­dent and would, there­fore, be con­trary to the Guide­lines for Plan­ning Au­thor­i­ties on Sus­tain­able Res­i­den­tial De­vel­op­ment in Ur­ban Ar­eas 2009 and to the proper plan­ning and sus­tain­able de­vel­op­ment of the area’.

An Bord Pleanála also said it wasn’t sat­is­fied that the de­vel­op­ment would not give rise to a traf­fic haz­ard be­cause of additional traf­fic turn­ing move­ments which might in­ter­fere with the safety and free flow of traf­fic on the pub­lic road, given that the scheme is to be served by two ex­tra ac­cess points on a site within an 80 km per hour zone and a mul­ti­plic­ity of ac­cess points in the vicin­ity.

The board took into ac­count that sur­face wa­ter drainage pro­pos­als for the site would re­quire down­stream works on third party land and said it was not sat­is­fied that the pro­posed de­vel­op­ment would not give rise to an in­creased risk of resid­ual flood­ing on such lands.

‘The pro­posed de­vel­op­ment would, there­fore, be prej­u­di­cial to pub­lic safety and con­trary to the proper plan­ning and sus­tain­able de­vel­op­ment of the area’.

Mr. Mol­loy of Mol­loy En­gi­neer­ing which con­structs waste wa­ter treat­ment plants and pump­ing sta­tions, ap­pealed against the County Coun­cil de­ci­sion on the ba­sis that the de­vel­op­ment would add ex­tra run-off into the ex­ist­ing wa­ter sys­tem which al­ready floods; that the road in­fra­struc­ture is in­ad­e­quate and there is a lack of so­cial and com­mu­nity in­fra­struc­ture in the area. He de­scribed it as ‘an ap­pro­pri­ate de­vel­op­ment that will split and un­der­mine the town’.

Busi­ness­man Michael Hayes.

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