Friday 15 December 2017

Zoned land reduction in the Bettystown region

A packed beach in Bettystown.
A packed beach in Bettystown.

Hubert Murphy

A MAJOR information meeting in relation to the new East Meath Local Area Plan will take place in Colaiste na hInse, Bettystown on Wednesday, January 15th from 4-7pm.

The draft plan has been formulated and was put on public display on December 13th and will be available for viewing until February 3rd.

The new plan for Bettystown / Laytown / Mornington East / Donacarney and Mornington, follows a period of consultation with locals who aired their views on a number of issues in relation to the development of the area.

One of the findings is that the level of zoned lands in the East Meath Local Area Plan 2005 significantly exceeded demand as provided for in the Core Strategy of the Meath CDP 2013- 2019.

'The new LAP must be consistent with and adhere to the Core Strategy,' the reports states.

The strategy for the area identified an additional household allocation of 80 households for Bettystown-Laytown-Mornington East resulting in the requirement for 3.2ha of land zoned for residential use.

It found the need in Donacarney- Mornington for 20 additional households resulting in a need for 1.0ha of land.

'After these units have been provided for there is a resultant excess zoning of 113.7 hectares in Bettystown-Laytown-Mornington East and 28.0 hectares in Donacarney-Mornington remaining,' it added. 'It will be a requirement to reduce the quantity of land zoned to accommodate residential development.'

As well as reducing housing land, the plans proposes upping community and recreational facilities to match the population demand .

'It is acknowledged that the area benefits from the extraordinary natural asset of an uninterrupted stretch of tidal beach which lends itself to both passive and active non-intrusive leisure activities.'

It adds that 'opportunities to restore amenities along the coastal and estuarine edges would assist in renewing the seafront and reinstating Laytown's character and tradition as a seaside resort.'

It is also proposed that community and recreational facilities be clustered in a central location between Bettystown Town Centre and the Educational Campus in order to achieve a critical mass for their sustained use and operation.

'Such facilities which are considered appropriate at this location include library, health facilities and playing pitches.'

The Bettystown area, being in the Dublin–Belfast Economic Corridor, is seen as a place of 'huge potential' for employment growth particularly through the tourism economy.

'While public transport to the main centres of Dublin and Drogheda is well catered for by bus and rail, challenges exist in addressing deficiencies in the existing pedestrian/cycling network. Promoting walking/cycling and broader Smarter Travel initiatives which seek to reduce car dependency are key considerations of this plan-making process,' the report adds.

They plan to 'nurture small and local financed businesses.'

Drogheda Independent

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