An Bord Pleanala have refused permission for infrastructure works in Dongaghcumper, Celbridge, Co. Kildare. A previous application for a large commercial development had been withdrawn by the developer and the new application for infrastructure works was seen as the precursor for a new application. Following significant third party objections the Board refused permission for 4 reasons as follows:
1. The site of the proposed development is located in the demesne of Donaghcumper House, a protected structure, in close proximity to the historic Main Street of Celbridge and in the vicinity of Castletown House and its historic grounds, which are significant elements of an 18 century
designed landscape. Having regard to the information submitted in connection with the planning application and the appeal, and including the absence from the planning application of detailed proposals for the overall built environment on the site, the Board is not satisfied that the proposed development would not prejudice the sensitive development of Celbridge, including the protection of the setting of buildings of architectural significance in the vicinity, and adversely affect the character and setting of both Castletown House, a protected structure of international importance, and of Donaghcumper House. The proposed development would, therefore, seriously injure the amenities of the area and of property in the vicinity and be contrary to the proper planning and sustainable development of the area.
2. Having regard to the historic, planned relationship between Castletown House and Demesne and the Main Street of Celbridge, and to the location of other buildings of architectural significance in the vicinity of the proposed vehicular link across the Liffey, it is considered that the proposed heavily trafficked road junction at Castletown House entrance gate would constitute a major intrusion into the streetscape, which would fail to respect the historic relationship of the town to Castletown House and adversely affect the setting of a number of protected structures, in this sensitive urban environment. The proposed development would, therefore, conflict with the provisions relating to conservation of amenities contained in the current Celbridge Local Area Plan, seriously injure the architectural heritage of the town and the amenities of property in the vicinity and be contrary to the proper planning and sustainable development of the area.
3. The proposed development would be unduly close to the River Liffey, would result in an excessive degree of encroachment into the Liffey Valley lands which, as set out in the current Kildare County Development Plan, are significant in terms of landscape character and of high amenity value and sensitive to development. The proposed development would, therefore, conflict with the provisions of the development plan in relation to protection of the amenity of the Liffey and be contrary to the proper planning and sustainable development of the area.
4. Having regard to the information submitted suggesting the existence of bats and otters on the site, both protected species under the Habitats Directive, the Board is not satisfied, on the basis of the submissions made in relation to the planning application and the appeal, that adequate ecological surveying has been carried out or that the proposed development would not have a significant adverse impact on the ecology of the site. The proposed development would, therefore, be contrary to the proper planning and sustainable development of the area.