City planning 'crucial for future prosperity'
IRELAND will miss out on vital investment if the government does not come up with a coherent strategy for city planning, the head of a property lobby group has warned.
Property Industry Ireland director Peter Stafford said the lack of planning was now becoming an urgent issue.
"Two out of every three people live on just 2.4pc of Ireland's landmass and we are becoming an urban country.
"Ireland is benefitting from the opportunities that come with being an urban country with large, dynamic cities as incubators for investment and innovation, but we are also facing negative consequences.
"Dublin now ranks alongside Rio de Janeiro, Rome and LA for congestion," Mr Stafford added.
Mr Staffford said that this meant Ireland was being left behind by competitor countries in the race for investment.
"There are a number of indicators which show whether a city is working: the availability and cost of housing, the cost of renting, the availability of commercial property, homelessness, and the cost of travel.
"On a number of those indicators, Irish cities are not performing as well as they should. This reflects our complex and disjointed planning system.
"For a country which is so dependent on international investment for employment and economic activity, it is important that we reflect on whether we are allowing our competitiveness to erode," he said.