Planning permission has been granted for 21 houses in Roslevan despite residents’ concerns for child safety and issues surrounding a 13-year-old environmental survey.
An application was lodged on at the beginning of March last year by J.J Fahy to construct 22 houses as well as connections to public foul sewer, surface water, public water supply and the installation of public services (telephone and electricity). Permission was also requested to access the new development from the already existing housing estate Gort Leamhain.
An Ecological Assessment compiled by Keville & O’Sullivan Associates Ltd. was submitted to Clare County Council last March. This report was dated August 2007 and was conducted for a previous attempt at planning permission on the site by Michael Fahy for 46 residential units that proved unsuccessful.
Padraig Howard, an adjacent landowner to the north of the proposed settlement offered his written consent to construct the units to Mr. J.J. Fahy on March 9th last year.
A report filed by the Environmental Assessment Officer Sheila Downes stated that “It is important that planning decisions are based on up-to-date ecological reports and survey data.” Referencing the difficulties in setting a specific timeframe, the report stated that “anything over three years is unlikely to be valid”. The Department of Heritage also raised concerns over conservation, outlining that the site is in close proximity to three lesser known Horseshoe Bat Species Roosts and that tracks indicate the site may be in use by badgers, which would require a derogation licence before planning permission is granted.
A large submission was filed by nearby residents of Gort Leamhain as part of their Residents Committee. The submission outlines that a cul de sac in their estate proposed as a transport link for construction vehicles between the new settlement and Gort Leamhain would pose significant risk to their children, of which 18 are under the age of 10 between houses 4 and 13. It also noted that none of the houses located at the cul de sac have boundary garden walls which would give children access to the roads. It also cited concerns over traffic congestion and safety as well as flagging that the ecological survey is outdated by 13 years.
A Further Information request was received on June 16, 2020 requesting the removal of residential unit number 22, to fix several units overlooking existing properties as well as requesting to update the ecological survey. Further Information was received on December 15, 2020 and despite several more observations submitted by residents of Gort Leamhain, planning permission was successfully granted on February 3, 2021 subject to 23 conditions.
These conditions outlined that permission was granted for 21 residential units and the use of the access road serving the Gort Leamhain housing development during the construction phase of the proposed development is not permitted . It also found the updated ecological survey to be satisfactory, documenting that bat roosts on site were unaffected and that no badgers were successfully identified. Funding of €45,000 was requested for potential damage to roads and a further €116, 529 to be paid towards public infrastructure by Mr. J.J Fahy.