Planning Minister launches Julianstown Village Design Statement
The Green Party’s Planning Minister Ciarán Cuffe has said that new planning laws commenced this week are designed to put the interests of our citizens first and will ensure that the property bubble and resulting banking collapse can never happen again.
Speaking at the launch of the Julianstown Village Design Statement last night, Minister Cuffe said that new National Local Area Plan guidelines for Local Authorities will be published later in the year and will be aimed at encouraging local people to be actively involved in the Local Area Plan preparation process.
The process of preparing the Julianstown Village Design Statement provides an extremely practical learning experience in supporting the preparation of a new generation of LAPs in Ireland.The importance of publishing these new Guidelines at this time is particularly relevant. Last week we commenced the main provisions of the new Planning Act, which was enacted in July and will radically reform how we plan our communities into the future. Since entering into Government in 2007 transformation of the planning system has been amongst the highest priorities of both Minister Gormley and I. The failure of the planning system to act as a counter-balance to worst excesses of the property bubble was a key part of the regulatory failures which led to our current economic and unemployment crisis.
The net result of the new Planning Act will require that within the next two years every area plan in the country will be required to be reviewed providing an opportunity for addressing the legacy issues of over-zoning but also to deliver more compact, walkable, and integrated communities with the necessary infrastructure, jobs and services to give every citizen of this country the quality of life they deserve.
“The Julianstown Village Design Statement has provided a successful example of how local people of all ages can participate and become involved in local village planning and design matters, enhance and revitalise their village’s unique ‘sense of place and identity’, and also contribute to the formal planning and development system. The community in this village is an important sustainable asset in the long-term and the future for Julianstown looks extremely bright indeed, he said. The new LAP Guidelines will enshrine the concept that local planning is best progressed by way of local participation and a partnership between the technical resources of the planning authority, the local knowledge of local communities and elected members, and use of external facilitators.
The Minister also stated I am also extremely encouraged to see the involvement of children and teenagers Indeed, I have recently made statutory provision for consultation with children and children’s groups during the making of statutory plans in Ireland in the new Planning Act. Our intention is to create a greater awareness and an appreciation of the need to manage our environment and landscape sustainably – and to acknowledge the implications for quality of life – from a very young age in this country. More importantly, it will gather a wealth of ideas from our younger citizens, who are after all, our future!