An Bord Pleanála has refused planning permission for 146 dwellings at Clonmel, Co Tipperary.
In a split decision on the “fast track” Strategic Housing Development (SHD) proposal, the appeals board granted planning permission to another 71 dwellings that formed part of the overall 217-unit application by Crann Ard Developments Ltd.
The split decision for the site at Fethard Road, Ardgeeha, comes as the appeals board confirmed that last year it granted planning permission to 16,771 housing units, 200 shared accommodation bed-spaces and 4,331 student bed-spaces in SHD cases.
According to the appeals board, 82 SHD cases were considered during 2019, and planning permission was granted for 67 developments – a grant rate of 82 per cent.
The board’s figures show that 118 valid applications for SHDs were received during 2019, more than triple the 38 applications received in 2018.
The board's chairman, Dave Walsh, stated: "The granting of 67 permissions during 2019 has made a significant contribution to meeting the overall increasing demands for new homes, with a notable increase in the number of apartment and multi-unit developments being granted permission in our cities and larger towns."
Mr Walsh added: “This level of applications is expected to continue into 2020, taking in account the number of pre-application consultations being held and requested, and An Bord Pleanála will continue to prioritise these cases and deal with any large-scale housing appeals as swiftly and efficiently as possible.”
In respect of the Crann Ard Developments proposal for Clonmel, the board inspector recommended outright planning refusal for the entire development.
The inspector, Stephen Rhys Thomas recommended refusal, concluding the development as proposed results in a poor design concept, lacks variety and distinctiveness, fails to establish a sense of place, and includes a poor quality of architectural and landscape design that fails to respond appropriately to the site.
Mr Thomas also found that the development does not provide high quality and usable open spaces . . . and provides poorly configured private amenity spaces in many cases, “all of which would lead to conditions injurious to the residential amenities of future occupants”.
However the appeals board only part-upheld Mr Thomas’s recommendation.
The board stated that it shared the inspector’s recommendation concerning one of the plots but decided that two other plots did not warrant a refusal given the inspector’s positive assessment of those two plots.