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‘Crazy days’ of ‘uncontrolled development’ are over

New Environs Plan more sustainable – Cllr Flynn

Áine Ryan

THE sustainable development of the Westport area has been confirmed at the eleventh hour but it does mean returning to the drawing board regarding the rezoning of certain tracts of its environs back to agricultural. 
Welcoming the pivotal compromises made by councillors, Fine Gael’s Cllr Peter Flynn said yesterday this decision ‘ensures that the crazy days of over-zoning and uncontrolled development are a thing of the past in Westport’.
He praised the Department of Environment officials who successfully convinced other councillors to roll back from the initial plan, which allowed for a population of 14,000 over the next four years.
Cllr Flynn was speaking in the aftermath of last week’s Area Committee Meeting during which Mayo County Council Officials revealed that a new Core Strategy for the Environs must be devised, encompassing variations on Westport House and Colonel’s Woods.
This has no impact on Westport Town Development Plan 2015.
Cllr Flynn said: “Great credit must be given to all of the people and many sporting organisations in the town that have made submissions over the last number of months. The new proposed plan will recognise and address many of the concerns raised and with the phased approach to development we will have a sustainable and balanced development plan.”
“I know many landowners will have concerns with lands reverting to agricultural zoning but for non-developer land owners it still means family members or returning immigrants can still build on their lands. It should also mean that previously over-priced land should be valued more realistically and give sporting organisations the opportunity to purchase and develop much needed facilities for Westport and surrounding areas,” he continued.

The revised Westport Environs Plan will be on public display in the coming weeks.

What is new in this plan?

• MOST of the lands to the west of Westport – Rosbeg, Cloonmanad, Streamstown – which were previously zoned residential will change to agricultural zoning.
• There will be significant changes to land zoned commercial and residential in the Lodge Road, Drummindoo and Monamore areas. Some of these lands will revert to agricultural zoning. Other sections will retain their existing zoning but will be sterilised indefinitely until all other developments in the town core are completed and occupied.