Planning & Development

Celbridge Community Council is an entirely voluntary organization that watches for planning and development proposals that have the potential to impact Celbridge. We analyse any impacts before making submissions on public consultations or lodging objections on planning applications.

Celbridge Community Council’s membership includes a group of citizens with a keen interest in the development of our town in a sustainable and tasteful manner. We have wide representation from many areas of the town and our submissions aim to consider and represent the interests of the whole of the town.  Many of our submissions are to Kildare County Council, some are to South Dublin County Council and we have also made submissions on development and transport proposals with a regional or national scope.  Planning objections would be lodged either with Kildare County Council or An Bord Pleanala.

Celbridge Community Council chooses the papers, proposed plans and development applications on which to make submissions or planning objections based on whether:

  • the proposed development is strategic to the development of Celbridge as a whole
  • the “estate village” heritage and character of the town may be enhanced or jeopardized by the proposed development
  • the quality of life of the Celbridge community may be impacted by the proposed development; the interests of commuters, young people, older people and all ages in between are considered

Celbridge in a Development Context

Celbridge is situated within the Greater Dublin Area Metropolitan Region meaning that it is earmarked for development as a suburb of Dublin. Celbridge has been designated a “Moderate Sustainable Growth Town” by the Greater Dublin Area Regional Planning Guidelines 2010 – 2022 and this has been reflected in the Kildare County Development Plan 2017 – 2023 (CDP) settlement strategy and in the Celbridge Local Area Plan 2017 – 2023 (LAP). Despite Celbridge having the 3rd largest population in Co. Kildare for almost 2 decades, with a 114% population growth rate since 1991, the smaller towns of Maynooth and Leixlip have both been designated “Large Growth Towns”. This would be fine if restraint was to be exercised in the rate of development planned for Celbridge but the proposed rate is as aggressive as in our neighbouring towns.

The National Spatial Strategy is being replaced by the “Ireland 2040” National Planning Framework but it’s unclear what, if any, impact this will have on the treatment of Celbridge in a planning context as the designation of “Moderate Sustainable Growth Town” came from the Regional Planning Guidelines for the Greater Dublin Area rather than from the National Spatial Strategy.

Celbridge Community Council’s submissions promote the following themes:

  1. Restraint must be exercised in the rate of Celbridge’s population growth in line with its designation as a “Moderate Sustainable Growth Town”.
  2. At the current level of population, serious social infrastructure deficits are evident within Celbridge. Until they are redressed, the town cannot absorb additional population.
  3. Completion of an additional river crossing is essential in the near term. Until it is built, the town cannot support the increased vehicular traffic arising from a population increase.
  4. Completion of a ring-road is essential to divert traffic from pinch points in the road network.
  5. Restraint must be exercised in delivery of new residential development thereby ensuring that physical and social infrastructure provisioning occurs as a prerequisite for all future development.
  6. Given Celbridge’s potential to develop into a primary tourism centre for the North East Kildare area, the preservation and promotion of culture and heritage needs to be paramount in planning decisions relating to the town. Consideration must to be given to provision of facilities to support Celbridge in fulfilling its potential as a tourism hub.
  7. Strengthening of the town centre by provision of public amenities and supporting the enhancement of the retail offering would invigorate the local economy.
  8. Public transport connectivity between Celbridge and surrounding areas must be prioritised in order to support the economic development strategies outlined in the County Development Plan
  9. The economic development of Celbridge is critical for sustainable growth. Special attention must be focused on generation of employment opportunities in industries that support sectors including, but not limited to, tourism and the knowledge based economy.

While it often feels that many observations made in submissions on public consultations are ignored, we have seen a number of examples of alternations being made to plans that relate directly to some points raised in our submissions.

We are always interested in hearing the views of residents from across the town to help shape any future submissions we make on planning and development proposals that have the potential to impact Celbridge.

Celbridge Local Area Plan 2017 – 2023

The Celbridge Local Areal Plan 2017-2023 took effect in mid-September 2017 but the Minister subsequently issued a Ministerial direction pursuant to section 31 of the Planning and Development Act 2000 (as amended) to

  • reinstate “Town Centre” zoning at Donaghcumper (rather than “Strategic Open Space” as voted on my Celbridge-Leixlip Municipal District Councillors)
  • reduce the amount of land to be zoned “New Residential” at Crodaun.

In January 2018, the High Court granted permission to a developer to challenge the Celbridge Local Area Plan.  The developer hoped to develop the lands adjoining Crodaun Forest Park that were de-zoned for residential development as a result of the ministerial direction. The case is due to come back before the court in March 2018.

Celbridge Community Council, like many other local groups and individuals, made detailed submissions to Kildare County Council on the draft Local Area Plan, subsequent amendments thereto and more recently the proposed Ministerial direction. We attended public meetings to take on board the views of the various residents associations and independently engaged with the local Councillors in an attempt to positively influence the future development of our wonderful town.

Our submission on the material amendments

  • examines each of the proposed Key Development Areas and highlights our views on each
  • highlights our concerns that the preparation of a strategic Transport Management Plan and Public Transport Strategy for Celbridge is not being attributed a high enough priority in the Draft LAP – while we are encouraged to  see material alterations pertaining to such a plan being included in the Draft LAP, having observed how little was actually implemented from the 2009 Celbridge Traffic Management Plan, we have real concerns for the implementation of the recommendations from any such plan

Please find copies of our submissions below:

Kildare County Development Plan 2017 – 2023

National Planning Framework Ireland 2040 Plan