Tag Archives: planning

Early next year, Toyota plans to start construction of a ‘prototype city of the future’ at a 175 acre site at the base of Mount Fuji in Japan. Details are a little fuzzy at present but according to the press release:

The city is planned to be fully sustainable, with buildings made mostly of wood to minimize the carbon footprint, using traditional Japanese wood joinery, combined with robotic production methods. The rooftops will be covered in photo-voltaic panels to generate solar power in addition to power generated by hydrogen fuel cells. Toyota plans to weave in the outdoors throughout the city, with native vegetation and hydroponics.



This morning.

Croke Park, Dublin.

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar at the Construction Conference sponsored by the Sunday Business Post where he spoke to delegates of the Construction Industry Federation.

Via The Irish Times:

Mr Varadkar told the conference  the Government would publish a new planning bill shortly.

He acknowledged that it was frustrating for builders and planners to see good projects end up facing sometimes “vexatious” judicial reviews in the High Court.

“That’s something, in my view, that’s going to have to change and this bill will change it,” the Taoiseach pledged.

Good times.

Varadkar promises law to block ‘vexatious’ planning challenges (Irish Times)

Sam Boal/Rollingnews

90348357Gerard Convie

Following a campaign spearheaded by Village magazine (fair play, etc)…

The government will appoint a barrister to investigate claims made by Gerard Convie, a former planner in Donegal, about the system of planning permissions in the county.


The former civil servant has made several attempts to have his allegations investigated by the Department of the Environment.

The Irish Independent can reveal that a senior counsel will travel to Donegal to investigate the allegations, at the request of Environment Minister Alan Kelly.

Mr Kelly made the decision to appoint the barrister after examining the allegations and on the advice of the Office of the Attorney General.

The barrister will interview Mr Convie and council officials as part of the probe.

Among the cases highlighted by Mr Convie are a petrol station which operated for over 10 years despite never having secured planning permission.

Among the cases highlighted by Mr Convie are a petrol station which operated for over 10 years despite never having secured planning permission.

Whistleblower planning claims set to be probed (Niall O’Connor, Independent.ie)

Previously: The Planning Whistleblower

Village Preservation Society

(Photocall Ireland)


The Edge and his planned Malibu cliff top ‘compound’

“The Edge submitted plans for the five houses separately, under separate names, which CCC staff originally took as an attempt to skirt environmental rules, according to the LA Times.

They also found that the project “would scar a steep, undeveloped ridgeline visible from much of the coastline, cause extensive geological disturbance and destroy environmentally sensitive native vegetation.”

A few months later, the Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy suddenly switched their stance on the development from con to neutral after The Edge gave them $750,000 in cash, $250,000 worth of work by a consultant, and 97 acres of land for conservation.

Then, in 2012, The Edge’s “extensive team” started lobbying for a pro-development, anti-environment state bill that would’ve helped clear the way for the project. “

Good times.

U2’s The Edge Could Be Allowed to Build Five-Mansion Clifftop Compound in Malibu (Curbed LA)

Thanks Mark Malone

Screen Shot 2014-08-05 at 10.22.20

The Irish Times reports:

“Cheating and giving false information was “endemic” in planning during the boom time in Kerry, An Taisce has claimed. Landscaping conditions attached to planning were also regularly ignored, the heritage body has told Kerry County Council.

In a submission to the draft county development plan for 2015-2021, An Taisce claims that farm families enjoyed favouritism in planning, with less stringent conditions than others.

“An Taisce is aware of cases where the house was sold to an outsider, despite having an occupancy clause for a particular person,” Dr Catherine McMullin, An Taisce’s honorary planning officer for the region, said.

Cheating in planning was ‘endemic’ in Kerry, says An Taisce (Irish Times)


Thomas Street, Dublin, designated ‘ACA’, an Architectural Conservation Area by Dublin City Council council

Dublin City Council has extended permission for a modern office block on the site of two Georgian houses on Thomas Street, against the advice of its own senior planner and the Dublin Civic Trust.
…The Civic Trust said the decision to allow the development was frustrating as it “rendered meaningless” the conservation status given to the street.
There seems to be an attitude here that any development is better than none, even in a historic streetscape such as Thomas Street,” said Graham Hickey, conservation officer with the trust.”

Council Permits Demolition Of Dublin Georgian Houses Against Advice (Olivia kelly, Irish Times)


Gerard Convie (top) and (below) from left: editor of Village Magazine, Michael Smith, Ian Lumley from An Taisce and Mr Convie in Buswells Hotel today.

A press conference held by Village magazine earlier to highlight allegations made by Gerard Convie, a former planner in Donegal, about the system of planning permissions in the county.

Allegations [see link below] the Department of Environment and its outgoing Minister Phil Hogan dismissed as “spurious”.

Michael Smith of Village writes:

“There needs to be awareness that impropriety in planning was not limited to Dublin; and impropriety in Donegal not limited to Garda. Gerard Convie, a very senior insider in the planning department, has made serious allegations about the system of planning permissions in Donegal. It is a scandal that the Department of the Environment said he had failed to produce evidence of wrongdoing. Though at considerable public expense this view was eventually repudiated, how it arose must be investigated – and officials and the Minister [Phil Hogan]  held to account. The repudiated view is directly analogous to the view the Department of Justice took on the respective credibilities of the Garda and its whistleblowers.. The Department must stop prevaricating and announce a proper review by a barrister into impropriety in Donegal planning under the 2000 Planning and Development Act (s255)…”

Blowing the Whistle so hard on Donegal even the people who haven’t been following so far, will hear it. (Village)

Previously: Spurious, You Say?

(Laura Hutton/Photocall ireland)