Rejection of plans for 23 houses in Ardrahan appealed

Galway daily news

An appeal has been lodged against the county council’s decision to reject plans for a residential development of 23 houses in Ardrahan.

Planning permission was sought for a residential development in Ardrahan that would have involved demolishing an agricultural building on site and constructing 23 houses in its place.

The county council rejected the plans in April over concerns from local residents that the development’s wastewater treatment system could contaminate the local drinking water supply.

A report by Parkmore Environmental Services was compiled on behalf of the Ardrahan Group Water Scheme noted that the planned discharge point was close to boreholes used by the group water scheme, and that the local karst landscape makes it difficult to predict how water will flow.

The developer submitted planning documents which stated that Molloy Prescast would design and maintain a wastewater treatment system for the next 20 years with four stages of treatment.

The wastewater would be stored then passed through a Sequential Batch Reactor system, followed by a sealed sand filter and a UV disinfection filter before being discharged.

A Hydrological Assessment was also submitted by the developer from Hydro-G which said the system was compliant with EPA guidelines and rejecting conclusions drawn by Parkmore Environment in relation to the flow of groundwater.

In refusing permission for these houses the council said that it did not have sufficient information about the proposed communal wastewater system, its “adequate installation and operation” and a guarantee of “long term management and maintenance”.

An appeal was made by the developer to An Bord Pleanála arguing that the management of the development’s wastewater has been a “key design consideration” from the beginning and that this development “would not be prejudicial to public health”.

The appeal states that the treatment system is fully compliant with Galway County Development Plan’s guidelines and “all relevant local, regional, and national planning policies and objectives”.

This case is due to be decided by An Bord Pleanála by September 2.