SO­LAR FARM IS FAC­ING APPEAL

Rath­new res­i­dents con­cerned over po­ten­tial glare of pan­els

Wicklow People - - FRONT PAGE - BY MYLES BUCHANAN

RES­I­DENTS are ex­pected to appeal against the grant­ing of plan­ning per­mis­sion for a 27 hectare so­lar farm at Mill­town North and Cron­roe in Rath­new. The de­vel­op­ment would con­sist of so­lar pho­to­voltaic pan­els cov­er­ing an area up to 182,120 sqm on ground mounted steel frames, an on-site sub­sta­tion and six in­verter and trans­former sta­tions.

Cllr John Snell said that an appeal to An Bord Pleanála is likely due to the scale of the de­vel­op­ment. He said: ‘I know some peo­ple are wor­ried about the vis­ual im­pact of the de­vel­op­ment, es­pe­cially the glare im­pact when light shines off the so­lar pan­els.’

WICK­LOW County Coun­cil has given per­mis­sion for a 27 hectares so­lar farm in Rath­new.

How­ever, a num­ber of lo­cal res­i­dents in­tend to lodge an appeal with An Bord Pleanála.

The so­lar farm at Mill­town North and Cron­roe would con­sist of so­lar pho­to­voltaic pan­els cov­er­ing an area up to 182,120 sqm on ground mounted steel frames.

It would also fea­ture an on site sub­sta­tion, six in­verter and trans­former sta­tions, un­der­ground ca­bles and ducts, bound­ary se­cu­rity fence, new in­ter­nal tracks, CCTV cam­eras and all as­so­ci­ated site ser­vices and works.

The wind farm will be al­lowed op­er­ate for ten years. The ap­pli­cant is BNRGN Mil­l­vale Ltd

Wick­low County Coun­cil have placed a num­ber of con­di­tions on the per­mis­sion, in­clud­ing the car­ry­ing out of a glint and glare sur­vey at in­ter­vals of six months for the firs two years the so­lar farm is in op­er­a­tion.

Cllr John Snell, a Rath­new res­i­dent, ex­pects an appeal to be lodged with An Bord Pleanála ob­ject­ing to the de­vel­op­ment.

‘There are some con­cerns out there and there will be an appeal. I know some peo­ple are wor­ried about the vis­ual im­pact of the de­vel­op­ment, es­pe­cially the glare im­pact when light shines off the so­lar pan­els. What im­pact might that have on lo­cal house­holds? There are also con­cerns over the im­pact on traf­fic move­ments on the back road from Ash­ford to Gle­nealy,’ said Cllr Snell.

Per­mis­sion has also been granted for a new fill­ing sta­tion de­vel­op­ment at Tighes Av­enue, Rosanna Av­enue, Rath­new.

The de­vel­op­ment in­cludes the con­struc­tion of a new sin­gle storey fill­ing sta­tion build­ing to in­clude re­tail sales area, a cof­fee bar/deli and as­so­ci­ated an­cil­lary ar­eas (134 sqm) to in­clude toi­lets, lobby/cir­cu­la­tion, as­so­ci­ated rooms and stor­age.

Cllr Snell feels Rath­new’s close prox­im­ity to the N11 makes it an at­trac­tive lo­ca­tion for de­vel­op­ment.

‘There are plenty of plans for de­vel­op­ment in the area. There are plenty of green field sites in Rath­new and it’s right be­side the N11. The same in New­town­moun­tkennedy, which is an­other place with a lot of de­vel­op­ments and ap­pli­ca­tions.’

Cllr John Snell.

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