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  • A report published today by the Government’s advisory body on housing, the Housing Agency, has projected the level of housing needed across the Republic in the next five years. The report forecasts a minimum required supply of 79,660 residential units in urban areas to support the population between 2014 and 2018, an average equivalent of 15,932. The per annum requirement across the country ranges from 9,526 units in 2014 to 20,853 units in 2018.

    47% (37,581 units) of total supply over the 5-year period is required across the Dublin Region, averaging 7,500 units per year.

    Outside of Dublin, the study identifies varying requirements across the other cities. In Cork City and suburbs rising to a per annum requirement of 1,469 units by 2018. There are close parallels in identified requirements in Galway and Limerick. Both cities will experience a shortfall in housing requirements in 2015 and require a total of 2,316 and 2,635 units respectively over the subsequent 4 years to 2018.

    Based on projected population growth, Waterford will have a supply requirement from 2017 and Kilkenny has an immediate supply shortfall.

    Elsewhere, trends highlight that some areas are adequately catered for, while other areas are not. There are pronounced requirements in settlements such as Drogheda Town and Dundalk over the next 5 years. Shortfalls are also predicted in Athlone, Ennis, and Edenderry .

    The study also considered household sizes into the future in the Dublin region and found that over the next 4 years, 57% of new households will be 1 or 2 persons and a further 18% will be 3 person households. Three quarters of all households over the period to 2018 will be for three people or less.

    The latter finding is of particular interest given the anecdotal evidence that the trend in planning applications is back toward larger, family sized housing.

    Published on April 15, 2014 By:David Mulcahy · Filed under: Residentail; Tagged as: ,
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  • Submissions on the Review of Part V of the Planning Act have now been completed (late September) and it remains to be seen what decisions will be made about the future of Part V for the planning system.

    The review of the social and affordable elements of Part V by the Department of Local Government and the Housing Agency was undertaken to try address the problems that exist with Part V and how it will work in tandem with the subsequent introduction in 2009 of an 80% Land Rezoning Tax.

    The review set out six options for the future – ranging from abolition or suspension to a new inclusionary zoning model.

    There is no known date for any final decision on Part V but it will be watched keenly to discover what will be the way forward.

    Published on October 4, 2013 By:David Mulcahy · Filed under: Planning Reports, Residentail, Uncategorized;
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  • The CSO statistics for Q1 2013 show a positive trend in terms of applications being approved for multi-development dwellings with a notable increase from Q4 in 2012.  The rate of approvals for multi-development dwellings had marginally decreased in the latter quarter of 2012 having previously shown a strong increase.  Whilst this growth is starting from a low level it will be interesting to see if the growth continues.

    Over all the number of all types of residential units was up by 24.7% in Q1 2013 relative to Q4 2012.

    Unfortunately the level of detail in relation to commercial planning approvals is notably lacking.


    CSO Q1 2013



    Published on June 26, 2013 By:David Mulcahy · Filed under: Residentail;
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  • A question came before An Bord Pleanala as to whether the erection of a raised timber deck structure to the front of a dwelling house in Shankill is development or exempted development.

    The raised timber deck structure is situated to the front of the dwelling and is accessed via steps from a hard surface driveway. It is enclosed by a guard rail and newel posts.

    Dun Laoghaire Rathdown County Council had previously concluded that the development is not exempted development under section 4 (1) (h) of the Planning and Development Act, 2000 as the decking structure materially affects the external appearance of this dwelling in a manner that renders the appearance inconsistent with the character of the structure and neighbouring structures.

    An Bord Pleanála has concluded that the raised timber deck was exempted development under the Planning and Development Regulations, 2001 (Class 6 (a) of Part 1 of Schedule 2).

    However the guard rail and newel posts were not considered exempted development under the Planning and Development Regulations, 2001.  Furthermore they were not considered exempted development under section 4 (1) (h) of the Planning and Development Act.

    Therefore the Board issues a split decision with the erection of the raised timber deck to the front being deemed exempted development and the erection of the guard rail and newel posts deemed not to be exempted development.

    Published on January 10, 2013 By:David Mulcahy · Filed under: Exempted Development, Residentail; Tagged as: ,
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  • A recent judgment delivered by Mr. Justice Hogan in the High Court (4th October 2012) has raised a very interesting issue in terms of the weight that should be placed on Article 40.5 of the Irish Constitution in terms of deciding on an application by a local authority to seeking an order to demolish a dwelling built without the benefit of planning permission.  Article 40.5 states that:

     “The dwelling of every citizen is inviolable and shall not be forcibly entered save in accordance with law”.

    In the case of Wicklow County Council -v- Fortune Justice Hogan was dealing with a situation where the defendant, Ms. Fortune, had constructed a small timber framed chalet approximately 70 sq. m. in size in a wooded area of high natural beauty in Lough Dan, Co. Wicklow. The Council had postponed enforcement proceedings pending a retention application by Mr. Fortune however when An Bord Pleanala ultimately refused permission for the house the Council made an application to the Circuit Court for an injunction to remove the dwelling.  The Circuit Court found in favour of the Council and ordered that the site should be demolished. The case came before Justice Hogan on appeal to the High Court.

    Justice Hogan noted in his judgement that this appeal from a decision of the Circuit Court raises “difficult and, in some respects, novel issues concerning the application of the Planning and Development Act 2000”.  One of the key issues related to the nature of the “inviolability” of the dwelling as provided for in Article 40.5 of the Constitution and to what extent, if at all, can this constitutional provision be invoked by the home owner by way of defence to an application for an injunction which would seek to compel him or her to remove an unauthorized dwelling.

    As noted by Justice Hogan Read the rest of this entry »

    Published on November 7, 2012 By:David Mulcahy · Filed under: Court Cases, Planning Legislation, Residentail, Rural Planning; Tagged as: , , , , ,
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  • Kildare County Council referred a question to An Bord Pleanala as to whether a ‘Shomera’ structure in the rear garden of a house in Maynooth was exempted development.  The ‘Shomera’ was being used as a hobby room and for storage.

    The Senior Inspector recommended that the structure was not exempted development referring to the excessive size and the use of the structure for additional habitable space to that of the main dwelling. Read the rest of this entry »

    Published on January 5, 2012 By:David Mulcahy · Filed under: Exempted Development, Residentail; Tagged as: , ,
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