Opposition to Rezoning of Delgany as a Level 4 Neighbourhood Centre/ Rezoning of Stylebawn House and Gardens sign now

 

PETITION

To our elected local representatives

 

Tom Fortune, George Jones, Grainne McLaughlin, Derek Mitchell

And to all local representatives in Wicklow

 

 

At the Council meeting in September you will have the power to vote on the new Greystones-Delgany and Kilcoole Local Area Plan (“LAP”) for 2013-2019.

 

Your vote on the new LAP and the influence that you have on the votes of party colleagues and the other members of the planning authority will affect the lives of everyone living in our community for generations to come.

 

We ask you to reject and vote against the following three proposed alterations to the draft LAP

 

Material Alteration No 3 on page 15 of the Manager’s Report and Section 4.1 of the LAP in so far as they designate Delgany as a Level 4 Neighbourhood Centre

 

Material Alteration No 20 on page 46 of the Manager’s Report

 

Material Alteration No 32 on page 67 of the Manager’s Report

 

We are opposed to the designation of  Delgany as a Level 4 Neighbourhood Centre, opposed to the RO18 referred to in Material Alteration No 20 and to the intensification of uses referred to in Material Alteration No 32 for the following reasons:

 

It will not be possible to give effect to the changes proposed in the LAP without radically altering the character of Delgany; Delgany has a distinct heritage. Its narrow twisty roads, bad bends and extensive walls are an integral part of its history, architecture and identity.  Sustainable development would protect the unique topography and topology of the roads in and out of Delgany including Blackberry Lane; your proposal will destroy it. The proposed zoning will not support the existing village centre at Delgany. It is unfair on the few existing traders that provide jobs in Delgany to expose them to competition from new commercial development. We have watched the decay and slow death of Bray town centre. We do not want the same planning mistakes in Delgany. We have vacant commercial premises in the village and abandoned development sites. The Council should be encouraging and promoting consolidation of the existing village centre and existing zoned land. Delgany does not need a supermarket or a new shopping centre and all the associated traffic congestion. We have two grocery shops already. We don’t need more shops in Delgany. We want jobs for our young people and this proposal will put existing jobs at risk. The proposed zoning will exacerbate existing traffic congestion. RO18 might alleviate traffic stacking on the steep incline to exit from Blackberry Lane into the village but it will not alleviate the dangers at the bend or on Priory Road. Creating a new junction further south on Blackberry Lane will exacerbate the well documented traffic hazards on Blackberry Lane. The Council’s own environmental experts and planners have acknowledged that Blackberry Lane is a significant natural heritage. The 2006 LAP identifies the lane as a special amenity area. The County Manager has stated that Blackberry Lane has reached its full traffic capacity. The proposed zoning will generate more traffic to and from the bad bend. Sustainable planning would focus on a strategy to alleviate traffic congestion and promote land use patterns that encourage and facilitate use of local public transport, walking and cycling; The proposed zoning will impact adversely on village pedestrian environment and safety; Currently it is not safe for children to walk to school, to walk to church or walk to the bus stop The proposed zoning amounts to sprawl into green-field countryside

 

 

 

 

 

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Appendix to be attached to Petition

 

The proposed alterations to the draft LAP will radically alter Delgany and can be summarized as follows:

 

The Council’s Retail Strategy states that Level 4 Neighbourhood Centres usually contain one supermarket with a limited range of supporting shops and retail services. Section 4.1 of the LAP and Material Alteration No 3 on page 15 of the Manager’s Report both designate Delgany as a Level 4 Neighbourhood Centre

 

Material Alteration No 20 on page 46 of the Manager’s Report provides for a new road objective numbered RO18.

 

RO18 requires the owner of Stilebawn House to either carry out substantial improvements to the junction of Blackberry Lane/Priory Road/R762 or alternatively provide for a new public road across the Stilebawn Lands from the R762 to Blackberry Lane.

 

Material Alteration No 32 on page 67 of the Manager’s Report provides for increased housing density on the section of the Stilebawn Lands that are on the southern side of Three Trouts Stream;

 

 Material Alteration No 32 on page 67 of the Manager’s Report also provides for an extension of Delgany Village Centre by new zoning for an intensification of uses including retail, service and commercial outlets on the following:

 

The section of the Stilebawn Lands that are on the northern side of Three Trouts Stream; the neighbouring properties at the Priory Road/Blackberry Lane intersection the property on the Glen Road known as Glenowen

 

We are opposed to the designation of  Delgany as a Level 4 Neighbourhood Centre, opposed to the RO18 referred to in Material Alteration No 20 and to the intensification of uses referred to in Material Alteration No 32 for the following reasons:

 

The comments by the Manager at A on page 70 of his report dated July 2013 are reasons to reject the proposals. The Manager refers to the protected structures; the ACA designation; the protected views, the protected trees; the traffic limitations; the drainage, flooding and topographical matters Delgany is an Architectural Conservation Area. It will not be possible to give effect to the Level 4 Neighbourhood Centre designation without damaging the ACA designation. Delgany is a Heritage Village. We are currently celebrating Heritage Week. Insensitive road widening is not a good planning solution in a heritage Village.

 

Past history illustrates that once lands are zoned the Council and/or An Bord Pleanala presume that permission for development must be granted regardless of environmental and service constraints. The Council presumes that because land is zoned for development it should be developed to meet the maximum amount of development permitted by the zoning. In the past, our elected representatives have advised us that once land is zoned for development WCC takes the view that WCC then has a duty to grant permission for development on the zoned lands and an obligation to facilitate such development whether by road widening or provision of other services.  They have explained that WCC is concerned that if it refuses to grant permission for development on lands zoned for development that the applicant would claim compensation from WCC. If WCC has genuine concerns in this regard then the obvious way to protect taxpaters against claims for compensation from applicants for planning permission is for WCC to be prudent about rezoning. Once land is zoned the preservation of amenities and the need for sensitive development within a framework of Sustainable Development seems to be ousted. We understand that the Council wants development levies and commercial rates to pay salaries and expenses but it is not fair on struggling small businesses to burden them with the Council’s financial problems. The Council could rent out every single one of the car park spaces at the County Buildings in Wicklow and generate an income. Workers in the private sector do not have free car parking at work. Sustainable development would concentrate on making sure that re-development of existing brownfield sites and infill development within the existing built up area takes precedence over greenfield development; Sustainable development would severely restrict development outside the existing settlement footprint; it would restrict urban sprawl into greenfield and encourage organic integration of the existing village centre at Delgany

 

What do we want

 

We want to halt further diminution in the character of Delgany Village as a result of traffic congestion and insensitive development; to rescue and enhance residential and community life in the village and its surrounds by fostering a strong identity for the area, by addressing the traffic issues and by ensuring that any new development is of an appropriate scale and style. Our key objectives are as follows:

 

preserve village character at Delgany; Protect the topography and topology of the narrow winding roads in and out of Delgany Improve pedestrian ways in and around Delgany; Work with us to agree, adopt and promote our Village Design Statement; Developers should be required to conform to a planning scheme. There should be guidelines for building heights and lines, patterns of materials, construction systems and architectural elements in order to create and maintain a sense of harmony. Resist pressure to develop lands alongside the N11 and on lands overlooking the Glen O’Downs Nature Reserve. Improve efforts to protect Tree Preservation Orders at the Old Rectory, The Valley of the Three Trout’s Stream and Stylebawn; Development has resulted in rampant removal of mature trees (including ancient oak and beech trees) and hedgerows and replacement with lelandii and laurel and unsightly wall building none of which is sensitive to the natural environment. The planting of lelandii and laurel as hedging should be prohibited. Improve efforts to protect preservation of views and prospects: Improve efforts to protect preservation / protection of the various buildings, structures and archaeological sites in Delgany

 

 

 

Back in the summer of 2005 many of us in Delgany were part of the Delgany Community Council that made a submission to the draft local area plan for 2006-2012. In that submission we quoted from experts that warned that the property boom was becoming a significant threat not just to the Irish economy but to financial institutions in particular.

 

We warned that if property prices were to suffer a significant correction financial institutions would get into difficulty.

 

We warned that if there was a property-induced problem in a financial institution the taxpayer would end up bailing out the institution.

 

Subsequent history proves we were 100% correct in our analysis but elected local councillors chose to ignore our warnings. Instead they added extensive new land use zoning to the LAP for 2006-2012.

 

The newly zoned lands were then mortgaged as security for heavy bank borrowings. In the end, we, the taxpayers, had to provide NAMA with the money it needed to buy the loans from the banks with the result that NAMA is now the effective owner of large land banks in Delgany-Greystones.

 

We, the taxpayers are upset about this. We work hard, many of us on long commutes stuck in traffic-jams every day, traffic jams caused by bad planning. We pay big taxes and feel that our taxes should not be used to remedy bad planning decisions which destabilize our banks and financial system.

 

Once again we ask you to be guided by the principles of proper planning and sustainable development when voting on the new LAP in September 2013. 

 

Signed:

Address:

 

Send to:  cosec@wicklowcoco.ie  


 

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Information

wicklowwillBy:
Nature and EnvironmentIn:
Petition target:
Wicklow County Council

Petition community:
T. Golden

Tags

conservation, delgany, lap 2013-2019, rezoning, wicklow

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