Court upholds refusal of cinema permission
A CHALLENGE to the refusal of planning permission for a nine-screen cinema, café and retail units in Navan, Co Meath, has been dismissed by the High Court.
Developers Navan Co-ownership secured permission from Meath County Council for the development, which also includes a car park, on a 1.58hectare site adjacent to Dan Shaw Road.
That decision was appealed to An Bord Pleanála which last July refused permission for the development.
The refusal was based on grounds including the development would fail to consolidate the town centre, link in with existing town centre activities, and conflict retail policy set out in the Development Plan for Navan.
The developer challenged the planning authority's refusal, based on a report complied by one of its inspectors, which it claims is based an error of law.
It was claimed the inspector linked the development of the lands to a proposal to build a Central Rail Station, linking Navan with Dublin in the vicinity of the cinema/retail complex.
There was no certainly the station will be delivered or has any timeframe been set for such a project and no provision in the Navan Development Plan that any development at the site is contingent on the delivery of a rail station, it was claimed.
Mr Justice Brian McGovern dismissed the challenge yesterday. He said the main issue in the case centred around the interpretation of sections of the development plan.
He concluded the board had correctly construed the development plan and the decision to refuse did not involve a misinterpretation of the plan.
The reasons given by the board for the refusal were "entirely consistent with the development plan" and "most importantly were based on a consideration of the proper planning and suitable development of the area".
The judge said there was no unreasonableness or irrationality in the decision.
While the inspector in his report had stated the proposed development was linked to the development of the central railway station those words were not used by the board in its decision.