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  • Construction 2020 Strategy for Ireland – Planning Implications

    This Government Strategy seeks to addresses housing, property and construction in a co-ordinated manner. One of the main themes is that of planning with the strategy recognising that the absence of good planning and strategic thinking in past years has served Ireland and its citizens badly.

    The goal is “to secure a proactive approach to planning, in which planning authorities actively engage with land and property owners, Approved Housing Bodies, and infrastructure providers in securing agreed planning goals and outcomes”. This would certainly make for a welcome change from the current situation where many developers and their agents feel that they are battling with the planners rather than working with them.
    It is noted that the following measures are to be introduced:

    • A National Planning Framework (presumably replacing the National Spatial Strategy)
    • A new Planning Bill
    • A new Policy Statement on Planning
    • An Office of Planning Regulation

    The following changes are also to be introduced:

    • current arrangements are to be amended so that lower rates of contributions can have retrospective effect for existing planning permissions that have yet to be activated and will legislate to this effect.

    • The current Regional Planning Guidelines that co-ordinate local authority plans will be replaced by more broadly based Regional Spatial and Economic Strategies from 2016.

    • flexibility around overall densities particularly outside of city centre or mature high-value residential locations

    • introduce a ‘use it or lose it’ provision in respect of planning permission for vacant zoned land

    • ensure that planning authorities engage actively on proposed developments of scale, ensuring they enter into pre- planning discussions with developers in a timely manner where these are sought, detailing required documentation.

    It is also proposed to examine:
    • whether there is scope to provide a more streamlined process in certain planning application cases, for example for ‘repeat’ or ‘change of house type’ applications.
    • whether process for delivering Strategic Development Zones can be improved.

    Published on May 15, 2014 By:David Mulcahy · Filed under: Planning Reports; Tagged as: ,
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