Monday 29 September 2008

Last-ditch effort to stop rezoning amid heritage fears

CONCERNED residents from Adare make a last- ditch effort today to try and persuade councillors not to rezone farmland for housing near the village.

Councillors in the Bruff electoral area, which covers Adare, have acceded to requests from land owners to rezone about 50 acres of farmland on the Limerick side of the village.

The move comes despite opposition from county manager Ned Gleeson and planners who fear it would damage its heritage appeal.

Councillors have a long-standing agreement to row in behind colleagues from any electoral area seeking support for rezoning.

The proposal will be voted on this afternoon when the Local Area Plan is brought before a special council meeting.

Unnamed developers have told councillors they will pay any costs if there are legal problems.

“We have lost the stopover at Shannon — do we now intend to lose the beautiful heritage village of Adare?,” The Save Adare Group said. Councillors supporting rezoning insist Adare needs affordable housing, borne out by the fact that only one member of the local senior hurling team resides in the village.

However the opposition countered saying: “We all agree affordable housing is first on the agenda, but ask yourself ‘are property developers going to pay massive money for land and then build affordable housing’? Rezoning is only suiting the property developers and not the people of Adare.”

There are two council members from Adare.

Cllr James Cavanagh (FF) supports the rezoning, Cllr Rose Brennan PD was abroad when the rezoning came before the regular monthly meeting last week.

If the rezoning goes through today, the Minister for the Environment John Gormley still has the power to block it.

Irish Examiner

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