Issues paper for pre-draft consultation, Loughmacask Masterplan/Kilkenny County Council
A draft of the new Kilkenny City and County Development Plan is to go on display later this month, sparking off the next phase of public consultation.
The draft plan will be on public display from December 22 up until March 22 next year, during which time submissions will be invited. Kilkenny County Council has said it is intended to maximise opportunities for engagement with the draft plan, subject to Covid-19 restrictions, as resources allow. It will include public webinars, and there will be numerous ways to make a submission, including in writing, via email and through the online forum.
In addition to this, a number of masterplans for the areas of Loughmacask, St Canice’s Campus, and the Fairgreen area of the city are being prepared. The draft plan for Loughmacask is currently the furthest advanced, and the council hopes to publish it early in the new year for public consultation.
Loughmacask, the northwest of the city, is considered under-developed. As well as potential residential development opportunities and roads, a site for the relocation of a city secondary school has been identified at Louseybush Lane.
Stephen Murphy, director of services at the local Father McGrath Centre says a proposed new road will have a major impact on the area at the Butts and the Tullaroan Road. A preferred route option is not yet selected.
Mr Murphy has said that solely online or virtual consultation will not be sufficient in this instance, and the draft plans must be on physical display if they are to be accessible to many residents. He says he and his team can work with the council to facilitate consultation using the local hall, to ensure physical distancing and public health guidelines are adhered to.
“Our staff can organise appointments from local people to physically view the plans and to ensure strict social distancing and best health practice can be observed,” he said.
Senior planner for Kilkenny County Council Denis Malone said that while gatherings are presently discouraged, it was the intention to have some kind of public consultation event. He said this was something that could be done in liaison with Mr Murphy, perhaps by way of appointments.
Mr Malone said the publication of the draft city development plan would further inform the various local area masterplans.