A new planning website, Irishplanningnews.ie, has been launched to provide up-to-date information and analysis about planning in Ireland.
Operated by planning consultant David Mulcahy, it aims to provide a single source for planning related matters in Ireland.
"Currently anyone seeking to keep abreast of developments in planning has to view a range of different sources including individual county council websites, the An Bord Pleanala website, the courts website and various other government sites."
These sources are essentially databases and are not designed for informative reading, Mr Mulcahy says.
The website will highlight and analyse important planning decisions around the country; summarise new planning legislation and case law; keep abreast of new planning guidelines; and monitor new development plans for cities, towns and villages.
He cites Bord Pleanala's recent decision to overthrow a refusal for a new private hospital near Sligo as a reflection of the complexity of the planning process.
"This approval was made despite both the county council and the Board's own senior planning inspector recommending a refusal of permission. The ultimate decision by the Board to grant permission demonstrates how subjective the planning process can be in this country," he adds.
"Planning has become very complex with new guidelines, legislation, policies, plans etc being introduced all the time. It can be very difficult even for planning consultants to keep up to date with
"Irishplanningnews.ie provides a single portal which allows professionals, the business community, community groups and general members of the public to keep abreast of what is happening in relation to planning in Ireland and enable them to remain informed."