Government Launches Ireland 2040 Planning Strategy
Today, the Government will launch its plans for the future development of the country. ‘Ireland 2040 – Our Plan’ is the successor to 2002’s ‘National Spatial Strategy (NSS)’.
The NSS sought to provide a structure for the country’s development by targeting focussed growth at urban gateways and hubs. However, the rapidity of Ireland’s economic, demographic and social change in the early 2000s, followed by the economic difficulties of 2008-2013, meant that the NSS had planned for a different future than that which emerged.
Ireland 2040 will now outline how and where the future development of Ireland will take place. It will be the State’s national planning framework, seeking to define where we live and where we work. It will also be vital for the plan to consider how we get about. Transport and planning must work in tandem with each other to ensure that the infrastructure exists for sustainable living, working and commuting.
The population is anticipated to increase by more than 750,000 by 2040 and will require a minimum of 500,000 new homes. Recognising that without intervention three-quarters of this growth could be centred on Dublin, development will be appropriately directed and dispersed amongst the other major urban centres. The Dublin-focused growth of the 1990s and 2000s has resulted in excessive urban sprawl and the emergence of 11 ‘commuter counties’, with negative consequences for the environment and society.
The content of Ireland 2040 will have a guiding influence on the emerging Regional Spatial and Economic Strategies being advanced by the three regional assemblies in 2017.
A period of public consultation is open until 16th March 2017, with drafts of the plan expected to be released in April and again during the summer. A final version of Ireland 2040 will be put to a Dáil vote by the end of 2017. Submissions may be made through the website or via email or post.