High Court overturns permission for 192 homes in Co Kildare

Permission for development at site quashed for second time following court challenges by community group

Permission for 192 homes at a site in Clane, Co Kildare, has been overturned in the High Court.

It is the second time Clane Community Council has successfully challenged approval given to developer Debussy Properties Ltd for more than 100 homes on the land.

This time the group succeeded on four grounds of challenge to the approval, including in relation to the high density of the build and a shortfall of parking spaces.

Mr Justice Richard Humphreys further agreed with the local group that An Bord Pleanála did not sufficiently consider the county development plan’s objective for greenfield sites such as the one at Prosperous Road, where this scheme was to be built.


The permission also fell due to its reliance on the same pre-application consultation it submitted in its previous application for the development.

That April 2021 permission, for a 142-home scheme, was quashed in late 2021 in an earlier court challenge by the Clane group. An Bord Pleanála conceded in that judicial review.

Second permission

The judge said the board and Debussy then proceeded as if the planning application had been returned to the board for consideration from the point after the pre-application stage.

This is not the case, he said, as the quashing of the ultimate decision “impliedly” overturns any interim steps in the absence of a specific remittal being applied for and granted.

The judge said the problem for the board, in defending its second permission, is that the pre-application process was an interim step in the overall approval procedure. The basic principle of judicial review is that applicants challenge an entire decision, rather than interim steps.

He quashed the permission and indicated that Clane Community Group, represented by FP Logue solicitors, is entitled to its legal costs.

Ellen O'Riordan

Ellen O'Riordan

Ellen O'Riordan is an Irish Times reporter