24-house development in Wexford gets the go ahead
an Bord Pleanala has given the green light for a 24-house development at Crosstown.
The Liam Neville development had been given the go-ahead by the county council, but more than a dozen local residents appealed the decision to An Bord Pleanala, citing a variety of reasons including traffic densiity, zoning and flood risk.
The site is a 1.375 hectare area, part of a larger landholding, that occupies a triangular formed by a local secondary road to the west and the regional R741 to the east.
The An Bord Pleanala report says there is substantial new housing development on the west side of the local road while the eastern side of the R741 (known locally as Wexford's motor mile) is dominated by commercial outlets, especially car sales and service.
The R741, being the main access to Wexford town from the north, appears to be quite heavily trafficked.
In their objections, local residents listed issues, among them that 100 per cent residental on the site is an apparent contravention of a neighbourhood/mixed use zoning; that it contravened various development plan policies, that the desity is much higher than that prevailing and does not respect the existing character, that it is contrary to the intent of the development plan that forsees a nucleus of development cntres in the appeal site along the R741 and that it turns its back on the R741, presenting back gardens and open space to the road and that the site lies below the adjacent main road and there is a long history of flooding.
In its response, the developer said the substantial commercial and residential area on the east side of the Slaney has been designated for future further expansion in the development plan. Zoning includes provision for residential areas, commercial and mixed use, economic development, a neighbourhood centre and the regional road is to be upgraded by the Road Authority.
The company said the density, at 17 units per hectare, is at the lower end of allowable densities 'within the changed development context as provided for in the development plan'. It said the development did not turn its back on the R741 and road works currently under way include provision of a significantly larger outlet to the existing culvert.. to accommodate drainage from the road and adjacent lands.
In his finding, the planning inspector said the development is not contrary to the zoning objective for the site, and that the proposed density is low in an urban context and falls within the medium density range indicated in the development plan.
It will, in effect, act as a transition from the existing very low density residential development adjacent to the south and the proposed neighbourhood centre further to the north.
The inspector said he agreed with the appellants that development will not turn its back on the R741 and most of the houses will face toward it. Both traffic and flood risk were ruled out as reasons as grounds for the appeal and the development was given the go-ahead, subject to conditions.