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  • The High Court has quashed planning permissions for a 33 turbine wind farm development in Roscommon following a judicial review brought by local residents.

    The main issue was compliance with the Habitats Directive. The Judge ruled that the appropriate assessment carried out by the Board was not lawfully conducted and did not meet the requirements of the Habitats Directive. A determination has still to be made regarding costs and whether the planning application should be sent to An Bord Pleanala for reconsideration. The Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht had expressed concern about the developments on environmental grounds.

    The Board’s inspector had recommended a refusal on the basis of the proximity to the Lough Croan Turlough Special Area of Conservation and Lough Croan Turlough SPA and recommended the Board refuse permission on the basis of the hydrological impacts on karst limestone and underlying groundwater system in an area of known flooding and concerns about migratory water bird species that use the area as part of their wintering range.

    Published on July 31, 2014 By:David Mulcahy · Filed under: Court Cases; Tagged as: ,
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  • Further to a previous article on the Council taking enforcement action against a homeowner in Co. Wicklow (see  post from Nov 7th 2012) there is now an update:

    The High Court have refused to make a demolition order against Ms. Katie Fortune for building a chalet in Lough Dan, Roundwood, Co. Wicklow.  Ms. Fortune has lived in the chalet for 14 years in an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

    Mr Justice Gerard Hogan refused to make a demolition order as the council had not provided any compelling evidence that the house was completely at odds with public policy objectives.  Although the chalet was unauthorised in his view the house did not jeopardise or threaten other parties’ rights.  In relation to the issue of being located in an outstanding area of natural beauty the Judge, having visited the site, considered the chalet was entirely hidden away from view and did not detract from any of the great vistas which are one of the glories of the Wicklow uplands.

    Other unauthorised structures on the site are still to be determined in terms of their potential demolition.

    Published on June 10, 2013 By:David Mulcahy · Filed under: Court Cases, Rural Planning; Tagged as: , ,
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