An Bord Pleanala has axed an appeal by fast food giant, McDonalds to build a drive-thru restaurant beside Tescos and the Kildare Village in Kildare town.
“Having regard to the distance from the traditional town centre and its isolation from existing development to the east and south-east (Tesco and Kildare Village Outlet) it is considered that the proposed development involves an uncoordinated form of development which does not integrate effectively with the existing pattern of development,” they say.
And “thus failing to provide appropriate pedestrian/vehicular linkages and is therefore not in accordance with Policy R23 of the Kildare County Development Plan 2011-2017, which encourages such consolidation”.
The proposed development would, therefore, seriously injure the amenities of property in the vicinity and would be contrary to the proper planning and sustainable development of the area,” declared the board.
It also found that proposals “to remove trees along the road frontages, the absence of an integrated landscape approach including lack of clarity regarding roadside boundary treatment, together with an inadequate internal layout and a serious proliferation of signage at a landmark site entering Kildare Town”, would seriously injure the amenities of the area and of property in the vicinity.
The board noted the concern of the inspector regarding traffic safety, however, it did not agree that this could be addressed by way of design alterations having regard to traffic levels.
McDonald’s had appealed Kildare County Council’s decision to turn down its application. The plans, which garnered some local opposition, were refused by the council due to concerns over increased traffic and its location at the entrance to a heritage town. The company wanted to build the restaurant along with 35 car parking spaces at the junction of the Nurney Road and the Monasterevin road.
Meanwhile, the oral hearing into the planned expansion of the nearby Kildare Village begins today, Tuesday April 30 at the Keadeen Hotel, Newbridge. It is understood the people behind the Whitewater Shopping centre sought the hearing which is being conducted by An Bord Pleanala. The Kildare Village outlet is also appealing a condition set out by Kildare County Council whereby a block within the development would require a separate planning application. The hearing is expected to last three to four days. The plans, if approved, would see the Village almost double in size. An Taisce will be entitled to attend as will Tesco who made an observation on the appeal.
- Niamh O’Donoghue