THE refusal of planning permission for the development of 162 residential units and a two-storey creche at Banduff Rd in Mayfield has been described as good news for Cork’s flora and fauna.
An Bord Pleanála made the decision due to the development’s potential to limit route choices on the provision of the planned Cork northern distributor road.
The planning body said that pending determination of the route of the road, the proposal is considered to be premature and inconsistent with the proper planning and sustainable development of the area.
The proposals sought to build 74 two-storey terraced houses, including 19 two-bedroom, 49 three-bedroom, and six four-bedroom housing units, and 88 apartments including six single-storey one-bedroom, 38 single-storey two-bedroom, and 44 two-bedroom duplex homes to be provided in 22 three-storey corner blocks.
Pedestrian and cycle access to the North Ring Rd was proposed via two pedestrian/cycle bridges across the Glen River.
However, there was considerable local opposition to the plans.
Green Party councillor Oliver Moran said that although Cork is in need of houses, An Bord Pleanála’s decision was “good news”.
He said that aside from the planned northern distributor road, “it would have limited too, options for development of an ecological park at the location”.
“The southside of the Glen River here already has special designation from Cork City Council,” he said. “The northern part came in from the county and lacks the same protection.
“There’s a strong feeling among local councillors to extend that protection now across the whole of the area. That’s important to create an ecological corridor along the Glen River and also to develop the area for the community around it.”
Workers’ Party councillor Ted Tynan said that he was “delighted” with the decision, as the development was a threat to the flora and fauna of the Glen Valley.
Mr Tynan described the area for the refused development as “a wildlife area of bogland and a beautiful valley”.
“The more you build on high ground, the more you’ll have flooding down in areas such as Blackpool and cultivating rivers and streams is by no means the answer — once they’re cultivated, there’s no life left in them,” he said.
Mr Tynan acknowledged that there is a “raging housing crisis with thousands of people on housing lists”, but said that nature does not have to be destroyed to fix the problem.