Regional Planning Guidelines

To support the implementation of the NSS as a “big picture” framework for achieving the Government’s objective of more balanced regional development, effective planning strategies are needed at regional level to provide the link between the national and local planning frameworks. Spatial planning at the regional level must work within the overall approach taken in the NSS, while providing more detail and establishing a development and spatial framework that can be used to strengthen local authority development plans and other planning strategies at county, city and local level.

Implementing the NSS requires that Regional Planning Guidelines be put in place across the country. The Planning and Development (Regional Planning Guidelines) Regulations 2003 (S.I. No. 175 of 2003) set out a number of requirements in relation to the preparation of Regional Planning Guidelines. In particular, by way of the Regulations, in accordance with powers under section 23(4)(a) of the Planning and Development Act 2000, the Minister has specified that the National Spatial Strategy is of relevance to the determination of strategic planning policies. This means that regional authorities are obliged to take account of the NSS when making regional planning guidelines for their areas.

In February 2003, Guidance Notes were issued by the Department to assist Regional Authorities in preparing guidelines. Please click Implementing the National Spatial Strategy Preparing Regional Planning Guidelines Guidance Notes (February 2003) .Regional Planning Guidelines are now in place for each of the Regional Authorities and can be downloaded from the Regional Authority Websites (see links page).

Since the publication of the preliminary CSO Census 2006 (which confirms significant population growth over the previous 4 years) it was considered necessary to review the population projections which have been used in the National Spatial Strategy and which formed the basis for the Regional Planning Guidelines (RPGs) adopted in mid-2004. The review was also necessitated as the CSOs update of regional population projections are not expected until late 2007/early 2008. See National Population Projections and Regional Population Targets 2006-2020. click here to view ….