Plans for a major commercial, medical and recreational centre at Carrickphierish, designed to act as a focal point for the burgeoning population in that area, have been vetoed by An Bord Pleanala.
Leebury Developments Ltd’s mixed-use scheme, set to provide a ‘neighbourhood centre’ for the city’s newest major residential area, was to include an anchor convenience store, 6 office suites, 21 retail units, 5 apartments, a medical centre and pharmacy, leisure centre, beauticians, two restaurant/ bars and car parking facilities.
In 2004, the City Council first revealed plans for two new neighbourhood centres in the North West suburbs, both of which would deliver about 2,000 households with accompanying facilities. ‘Neighbourhood One’ at Carrickphierish, the first to be developed, would include a number of private housing estates and the local authority’s Blackberry Fields, with Leebury’s scheme providing much needed public amenities for residents.
Permission was also sought for public plazas and civic areas, social and community open spaces, a public park with playground and pedestrian streets. Last year, An Bord Pleanala approved another mixed-use retail/residential development in the area, which includes a public house/ restaurant, a supermarket anchor store, pharmacy, leisure centre, offices, restaurants, offices and about 130 apartments, along with car parking facilities.
When it was first announced, back in 2007, Leebury’s four-storey development proposed for a large ‘green field’ site in the Carrickphierish Road, Bawndaw and Ballynamona area, looked set to further change the face of that once rural area. The proposal received planning permission from Waterford City Council in March of this year but was subsequently appealed to An Bord Pleanala.
Noel Frisby Developments lodged an objection to the proposal with the planning authority, largely on the grounds of the scale of the proposed development and the impact it would have on retail trade in the area.
Gracedieu Residents Group, while welcoming the development, raised concerns regarding the layout, a lack of open space, failure to provide all-day use and community use and a lack of connection to existing communities. Agents for Parker Green International (Waterford) Ltd expressed concern regarding the proposal’s scale, retail capacity and car parking limitations.
Earlier this month, a Bord Pleanala Inspector ruled that the proposed development would materially contravene the City Development Plan and negatively impact on established shopping patterns in Waterford, including the city centre.