Uimhir Thagarta Uathúil: 

13 - Landscape, Recreation & Amenity

We live in Coughlanstown west with our four young children, and adjoining townlands of Harristown and Mullacash. This is a scenic country-side area that is enjoyed by all who walk, run, and cycle the many quiet roads. The panoramic views of the Wicklow mountains and Agricultural lands are unique. The area is steeped in history and has lots to offer in terms of nature, flora and fauna.  

From my review of the Draft Development Plan, I have concerns for the lack of protection for the environment and landscape, biodiversity and rural economy where I live. Chapter 13: Landscape Character Assessment defines Coughlanstown and Harristown areas in Eastern Transition, Class 2: Medium Sensitivity. Table 13.3 states the areas are highly compatible with Solar energy and medium compatibility with Wind energy development. The Development Plan should be revised with the following:  

  • The Development Plan should confirm its priority to preserve high quality agricultural land in this area, and clearly state how it will protect the contributions made by agricultural and food sectors to the local economy.
  • The Development Plan should clearly state the development of Solar/ other Energy projects will not result in the loss of prime agricultural land.

In addition, the proposed greenway along the disused Sallins to Tullow railway line (National Transport Authority Cycle Network Plan) for the greater Dublin area, will run through Coughlanstown and Harristown townlands. This greenway would be a fantastic addition to local areas of Coughlanstown, Harristown and Mullacash areas. The Development Plan should be revised with the following:  

  • The Development Plan should prioritise this green way (under policy TM P2) and target its delivery by end of 2029.   The designated Regional and Local Greenway Routes within Kildare must be given special protection against development upon the Greenway Route corridor, and this should be clearly articulated in the Development plan.
  • The plan should also set policy for the development of this greenway so that its development does not impact harmfully on local farms, biodiversity or ecology. 

Yours Sincerely,

Mary Flaherty and Brian Giblin