Planning starts in Louth fall but at slower rate
PLANNING applications and construction starts in Louth continue to fall, but at a slower rate than this time last year, according to new figures released by a Dundalk-based company.
The latest edition of the National Housing Construction Index compiled and issued by Link2Plans shows the rate of decline of planning applications and construction commencement in Louth has slowed this year compared to 2012, which, the company says, shows 'there are signs of improvement for the county'.
The team of researchers at www.link2plans.com have examined every housing construction planning application and planning commencement from January to August 2013, in the production of the housing construction index which gives a direct comparison with the exact same period in 2012.
Viewed on a nationwide basis, the National Housing Construction Index reveals there is a 6% decrease in planning applications but project commencements were down even further by 10% since last year.
The rate of planning applications fell by 6% but compared to being down 24% last year, this is a significant improvement. Planning applications made in Louth decreased from 224 in January to August 2012, to 211 in the same period in 2013.
In addition, the construction commencement rate also fell by 3% but this is compared to a fall of 13% last year which shows that the rate of decline in Louth is slowing down, from 110 in January to August 2012 to 107 in the same period in 2013. This shows that the number of commencements made in Louth are declining but at a much slower rate than they were and with the large drop in the rate of decline in applications being made since last year, Louth may see improvement in commencements later in the year.
Although Louth is still showing signs of decline, it is performing higher than the majority of counties. For example, Waterford, Westmeath and Kerry saw a fall in commencements of 49%, 47% and 29% respectively. Commencement increases were seen in five counties: Roscommon (51%), Longford (8%), Meath (8%), Dublin (8%) and Wexford (3%).
Managing Director of Link2Plans, Danny O'Shea, said: 'The index shows that there is an overall trend of falling planning applications but the rate of decline is less pronounced than last year and this may be a positive contributory factor leading to an increase or at least a further slowdown in the decline of commencements.
'Therefore, the decline in commencements in Louth is expected to level out as a result in the huge slowdown in decline of planning applications being made'.