City centre needs more than blocking development in the suburbs

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Architect's impression of the proposed Castletroy Town Centre development.
Architect's impression of the proposed Castletroy Town Centre development.

THE FUTURE of Limerick’s city centre will depend on more than just blocking development in the suburbs.

That’s according to Social Democrats local election candidate Sarah Jane Hennelly who was responding to a Bord Pleanála ruling that upheld Limerick City and County Council’s rejection of a plan to expand the Castletroy Town Centre.

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The project, which would have added 17 new units to the centre, was refused planning permission on the grounds that “the size and scale of the development proposed would have an adverse impact on the vitality and viability of the City Centre”.

Sarah Jane Hennelly, Social Democrat election candidate.

”Planning decisions are there to be challenged,” the Social Democrats candidate told the Limerick Post, adding that “a legacy of mistakes by planners is what brought this city to where it is today, so it is important to challenge and scrutinise planning continuously.”

The planning appeals board acknowledged that the redevelopment of the Castletroy centre would be welcomed, but the current plans would have an impact on the viability of Limerick City Centre.

Ms Hennelly said that the argument that the proposal detracts from the city centre “was not strong enough reason” to block the development of the development east of Limerick City Centre.

“The bottom line is that the city centre’s future will depend on more than blocking suburban developments, so this decision isn’t progress. We’re left in the exact same situation as before.

“We need to plan smart. Castletroy and the surrounding area will continue to grow exponentially and we need to plan properly for that,” Ms Hennelly concluded.