Major housing development on outskirts of Gorey denied planning

Scheme of 363 homes denied due to its poor design and layout and lack of facilities

The planned development was to be built about 1km outside Gorey. Photograph: Nick Bradshaw

The planned development was to be built about 1km outside Gorey. Photograph: Nick Bradshaw

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A major development of more than 360 homes on the outskirts of Gorey, Co Wexford, has been refused planning permission due to its poor design and layout and lack of community facilities.

An Bord Pleanála ruled that the project, which is one of the largest residential developments outside Dublin in recent years, failed to provide services and facilities which would deliver a sustainable neighbourhood as it was almost entirely residential in nature.

It chose not to accept the recommendation of Wexford County Council to grant planning permission for the development which has also received the support of local councillors given the current housing demand in the Gorey area.

Council planners said the scale of the proposed development was not exceptionally large given the planned growth of Gorey.

Dublin-based property developer, Axis Construction, had sought approval for the development of 262 houses and 101 apartments as well as a crèche on a 15.7 hectare (38.7 acre) site at Clonattin Village about 1km outside Gorey under the fast-track planning process for strategic housing developments.

Appropriate location

The company had claimed the site was an appropriate location for residential development given its proximity to Gorey town centre and complied with the objective of the National Planning Framework for consolidated and sustainable growth patterns.

It pointed out that an adjoining site was earmarked for the development of a new primary school.

Axis Construction acknowledged that its plans represented a material contravention of the local area plan for Gorey in respect of housing mix and car parking.

The owners of the nearby Marlfield House Hotel had opposed the plans on the basis that the scale and density of the scheme was inappropriate for such a location.

The hotel also claimed the facilities enjoyed by its guests would be affected by noise, traffic and road safety concerns due to the development.

Other objectors pointed out that one of the apartment blocks was on a site that had previously been earmarked for a “village centre” to provide community services including a medical centre, crèche and shops.

In its ruling, the board also criticised a proposed link road to the existing Courtown Road as unsatisfactory and claimed the entrance to the housing estate would be dominated by roads and surface car parking.

An inspector with An Bord Pleanála said the layout of the scheme would result in through traffic using local residential roads and streets.