Sunday 26 May 2019

Major boost for Waterford as €280m plan to regenerate North Quays gets dramatic clearance

An artist's impression of the proposed development in Waterford
An artist's impression of the proposed development in Waterford Newsdesk Newsdesk

A €280m plan to redevelop Waterford City’s North Quays has got the green light after objections to the project were withdrawn.

The dramatic eleventh-hour withdrawal of objections paves the way for what is being described as the most significant development in the history of Waterford and the South East.

An Bord Pleanála had been due to hold a public meeting to hear oral submissions by two objectors to the regeneration project this morning.

However, yesterday evening it emerged one of the objectors had withdrawn from the process. Then this morning, just before the hearing was due to begin, it emerged the second objector had entered discussions with the local authority.

At 10.30am Inspector Hugh Mannion from An Bord Pleanála told those assembled at the hearing that with both objections withdrawn, there was nothing for the body to determine and that the long awaited North Quays development could proceed as planned. 

Waterford Senator Paudie Coffey, who played a major role in getting the North Quays project designated as a Strategic Development Zone (SDZ) during his time as Minister of State for Housing and Planning, today said the latest developments had removed the final obstacle to a landmark development that will initially create up to 6,000 jobs in the region.

Senator Coffey said: "This is a significant step towards the regeneration of the North Quays. This is the first SDZ that has been passed without an objection and sends a clear message to investors from the wider public and local community who want to see the site rejuvenated and new commercial and employment opportunities for our city and region."

He added: “Waterford’s day has now come and it’s time now for us all to grasp the opportunity before us so that our citizens, businesses and future generations benefit from this major investment opportunity.”

The Government investment in the North Quays confirmed in Project Ireland 2040 will unlock more than €280m of private investment by the Saudi Arabian Fawaz Alhokair Group.

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