Athy retail development appealed to An Bord Pleanala again

A retail development in Athy has been appealed to An Bord Pleanala for a third time.

A retail development in Athy has been appealed to An Bord Pleanala for a third time.

RGDATA, a representative body of independent retailers, has objected to the Geraldine Partnership development, which includes an anchor tenant supermarket, four shop units and 76 car parking spaces for the south Kildare town.

It filed its objection to the planning authority last week.

Previously local residents and a local supermarket objected to the development in 2005 and 2009 respectively and the planning authority found in their favour.

The retail unit outlined has been down scaled from what was originally planned in 2005. It includes a retail unit, off-licence, four shop units and 76 car parking spaces.

RGDATA argues the development does not comply with the retail planning guidelines regarding the maintenance of the vibrancy and vitality of Athy town given that the proposed site is located 1km from the town centre.

Developer Michael Purcell of the Geraldine Partnership said the appeal was “unfortunate”.

“It’s unfortunate that this retail development is being appealed to an Bord Pleanala, but that is the democratic process. It means that there is another retail major development that has been held up. Athy is the most under-shopped town in the county, if not the country. There is no Dunnes, no Tesco, No Aldi. There is a gap in the market and hopefully the Bord will issue a favourable decision.”

He declined to comment on whether or not an anchor tenant supermarket has been confirmed for the centre.