Uimhir Thagarta Uathúil: 
Elva Phelan

Cross cutting Issues

Please accept my submission on the Issues for consideration for the Kilkenny County Plan. In these submissions I address my views on locations to meet housing demand, infrastructure and tourism and there interrelationship of these three issues.

The Kilkenny County Development plan should tackle the challenge of delivering housing that will enable growth to support the local economy in a sustainable manner. The approach towards housing delivery in the plan should carefully consider allocating sites suitable for housing. Sites for housing should be focused in and adjacent to towns and villages. The County Plan should resist sprawling development, by looking at settlement boundaries and progressing options for development within village and town centres first and foremost.

Delivering housing in close proximity to villages and towns will help to revitalise the County’s villages/ town by encouraging residents to support local businesses that are within easy access. This form of development also allows for more efficient and sustainable infrastructure delivery, including unities, waste management, social infrastructure and telecommunications.

Modern life requires a greater focus on connectivity through telecommunications. The delivery of infrastructure to support high speed broadband to widely dispersed communities is challenging. Our economy is changing, with significant growth of small enterprises and an increasing level of flexible and home working. This need to be supported with the required infrastructure needed to allow this type of economic activity to grow.

Kilkenny is rich in heritage and the County Plan must support the County’s tourism sector. The Plan should actively protect its assets to ensure their long term contribution to the tourism economy. Kilkenny City Centre is a key attraction on a national level for international tourists visiting Ireland. Promoting the city centre’s retail and leisure offer is integral to this. This includes supporting retail, restaurants and the city’s night life. Supporting housing within this city centre would help promote the long term viability and vitality of the city centre. Change of use from commercial to residential should be considered commercial vacancy rates are high.

Visitor accommodation is also paramount it this success. Mount Juliet is a major asset to the county. This county estate offers visitors an opportunity to experience Ireland’s special rural beauty, and it supported by a range of leisure facilities that cater for both tourism and local amenity requirements. The recent expansion of the hotel accommodation will enable the estate to cater for more visitors and ensure its long term sustainability. However the estate is currently under threat of overdevelopment, in particular of private housing. The County Plan should actively plan for the protection of this facility and resist further residential development. It is not a suitable location to deliver housing to meet growth.

Fiafraigh / freagra a thabhairt ar cheist nó faisnéis a bhaineann leis an observation seo a roinnt.

Cuir nóta tráchta nua isteach
All comments will be reviewed for compliance with the Beartas Modhnóireachta before publication.