Planning slammed

Donegal’s planning system has been slammed as the worst in the country in recent years.

Donegal’s planning system has been slammed as the worst in the country in recent years.

A damning report from heritage body An Taisce, which surveyed the records of planning in every county, tested each council on criteria for good planning decisions.

The report showed that Donegal had approximately 2,250 hectares of residential zoned land in 2010 which would be sufficient for an additional population of 180,000 people. But despite this, approximately 50% of all residential planning permissons in Donegal over the past decade were granted on unzoned land. “These trends are symptomatic of a wider systems failure in which counties Donegal, Roscommon, Leitrim and Kerry perform worst,” the report said.

Donegal County Council said yesterday it was considering the contents of the report and will issue a statement in due course.

The report said there is a very strong correlation between poor performing councils and a range of negative socioeconomic indicators. Most of the worst performing councils are in the north west of the country and the region has a high number of ‘Ghost Estates’, lower house prices, a high concentration of septic tanks, and falling population.

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