Section 8 Infrastructure and Environmental Management

opendate_range28 Sep, 2020, 9:00am - 9 Dec, 2020, 4:00pm

8.1 Information and Communications Technology

Planning applications relating to the erection of antennae and support structures shall be accompanied by the following details:

  1. A reasoned justification regarding the need for the particular development at the proposed location in the context of the operator’s overall plans for the county having regard to coverage. This justification shall demonstrate that existing masts and support structures have been examined to determine if the attachment of new antennae to existing structures can provide the coverage required. The applicant shall submit a Discovery Series Map or similar map type (to be agreed with the planning authority) to the scale of 1:50,000 the location of all telecommunication structures within a radius of 1km of the proposed site, indicating the coverage area of the proposed facility and a technical evaluation of the capabilities of these masts to take additional antennae and provide the coverage required.
  2. Detailed proposals to mitigate the visual impact of the proposed development, including the construction of access roads, additional poles and structures.
  3. Access roads will be permitted only where they are absolutely necessary. The applicant must demonstrate that the siting of the access road has been carefully selected to minimise visual impacts on the landscape and the natural environment, ensuring that they do not scar the landscape and that they follow natural contours. It shall be a condition of permission that the land is reinstated at the end of the construction period. In the event that a developer requires that an access track is to be retained, the developer shall indicate the justification for doing so as part of the planning application and indicate the frequency of visits which will be required to service the site and facility.

8.2 Water

8.2.1 Surface Water Management

The Planning Authority will require the use of Sustainable Drainage Systems (SuDS) in the design of new developments in the county. The use of SuDS will control the release of water runoff in a carefully managed way, will improve the quality of surface water run-off and will seek to ensure that the risk to the receiving water from pollution is minimised.

The design of SuDS measures should have regard to the CIRIA report C753 the SuDS Manual (2015) in order to maximise benefits:

  • Use surface water runoff as a resource;
  • Manage rainwater close to where it falls (at source);
  • Manage runoff on the surface (above ground);
  • Allow rainwater to soak into the ground (infiltration);
  • Promote evapotranspiration;
  • Slow and store runoff to mimic natural runoff rates and volumes;
  • Reduce contamination of runoff through pollution prevention and by controlling the runoff at source;
  • Treat runoff to reduce the risk of urban contaminants causing environmental pollution.
  • Depending on the characteristics of the site and local requirements, these may be used in combination and to varying degrees.

SuDS include devices such as swales, permeable pavements, filter drains, storage ponds and constructed wetlands, soak ways and green roofs. The range of SuDS components available provides flexibility to designers to integrate surface water management with urban design and to meet water quality amenity and biodiversity design criteria in a range of different ways. In some exceptional cases and at the discretion of the Planning Authority, where it is demonstrated that SUDS devices are not feasible, consideration may be given to the installation of underground attenuation tanks or enlarged pipes in conjunction with other devices to achieve the required water quality. Such alternative measures will only be considered as a last resort.

Watercourses should remain open in their natural valley and culverting shall be confined to road crossings. In exceptional circumstances and at the discretion of the Planning Authority, approval may be given to install a culvert within a development where it is demonstrated that this is the most appropriate design response based on site specific constraints/circumstances.

8.2.2 Ground Water Management

The Planning Authority will require adequate and appropriate investigations to be carried out into the nature and extent of any potential soil and groundwater contamination from a proposed development and the risk associated with site development works at sensitive locations.

8.2.3 Water Conservation

Water conservation measures should be incorporated into all new developments. In particular, the re-use/recycling of water on commercial and industrial sites with high water usage will be required. Developments are encouraged to include proposals for rainwater harvesting, the design of which should have regard to BS 8515:2009 Rainwater Harvesting Systems - Code of Practice. Rainwater butts which are containers for collecting rainwater from roofs and downpipes should be installed in new residential developments.

8.2.4 Connection to Public Water or Group Water Scheme

Developments which propose to connect to public water facilities will be reviewed by the Irish Water. Where it is proposed to connect to a public water supply, the applicant should contact Irish Water with a Pre-Connection Enquiry. The applicant is advised to confirm the feasibility of a connection before finalising the design of the development and seeking planning permission.

Where it is proposed to connect to a group water scheme, the application should include written consent to that connection, and details of works required to facilitate same.

8.2.5 Private Boreholes

Where it is proposed to serve a development by a private borehole on site, the following information shall be submitted with the planning application.

  • The location of the proposed borehole. The borehole must be located within the site edged red and on lands within the applicant’s ownership.

8.3 Wastewate

8.3.1 Private On-Site Wastewater Treatment Systems

Where a private on-site wastewater treatment system is required to serve an individual dwelling house:

  • The subject site shall have a minimum area of 0.2ha.
  • The wastewater treatment system must be within the site edged red and on lands in the applicant’s ownership.
  • The planning application shall include a Site Suitability Assessment carried out by suitably qualified and approved Site Assessor.
  • The siting, design and installation of the wastewater treatment system shall be in accordance with the requirements of the Code of Practice: Wastewater Treatment and Disposal Systems serving Single Houses (P.E. <10), published by the EPA in 2009 or future updates. It must comply with minimum separation distances to various receptors specified in the Code of Practice.
  • The applicant may, by condition of the planning permission, be required to enter into a maintenance agreement for the proposed treatment plant.

8.3.2 Connection to Public Wastewater Facilities

Developments which propose to connect to public wastewater facilities will be reviewed by the Irish Water. Where it is proposed to connect to public water wastewater facilities, the applicant should contact Irish Water with a Pre-Connection Enquiry. The applicant is advised to confirm the feasibility of a connection before finalising the design of the development and seeking planning permission.

8.3.4 Buffer Zones Around Public Wastewater Treatment

A buffer zone will be required around public wastewater treatment systems. Table 8-1 provides recommended minimum distances to be used as a guide.  The detailed recommended distances may be reduced in circumstances where the Council is satisfied, following detailed scientific studies, that existing or proposed residential development will not be unduly impacted by the wastewater treatment system. This may apply where the existing wastewater systems are upgraded or extended. The detailed recommended distances may also need to be increased, where it is the opinion of the Council that circumstances exist which necessitates greater separation between residential development and treatment systems. The separation distance is measured from the boundary of the treatment system site to the building line of the residential development.

Table 8-1 Buffer Zones around Wastewater Treatment Systems

System Size
Population Equivalent (P.E)

Approx. number  of houses served

Distance from existing and  proposed residential development (metres)

10-40

2-10

28

41-60

11-15

31

61-80

16-20

34

81-100

21-25

37

101-120

26-30

40

121-140

31-35

43

141-160

36-40

46

161-500

41-125

50

500-5000

>125

100

>5000

N/A

150

8.4 Air Quality

Any activities likely to give rise to dust emissions, for example, construction activities, extractive industry shall make suitable arrangements, and take precautionary measures, to suppress and control dust arising from the activity or the handling and transportation of materials. The deposition of dust on surrounding lands, or spillage onto public roads shall be prevented at all times.

Dust levels emanating from any site shall not exceed 350 milligrams/square metre per day averaged over a continuous period of 30 days, measured as deposition of insoluble particulate matter, at any position along the site boundary.

The concentration in ambient air of PM10 at any sensitive / residential receptor shall not exceed the quantity specified in a schedule to the Air Quality Standards Regulations 2002, and which is not to be exceeded for the period and under the conditions specified in the schedule in relation to that pollutant.

8.5 Lighting

Lighting levels within a new development must create a secure environment. Pedestrian links must also be illuminated. Dark corners and alleyways should be avoided. Light spill should be avoided to protect residential amenity.

Street lighting should be designed in accordance with the standards laid out in Wexford County Council’s Public Lighting Specification document (2018).  

External lighting schemes for commercial and industrial premises, sports grounds and other community facilities should be designed, installed and operated so as to prevent nuisance to adjoining occupiers and roads users, in the interests of amenity and public safety. A Lighting Plan will be required for developments in sensitive locations.

The provision of external floodlighting of sporting and recreational facilities will be carefully considered by the Planning Authority in order to protect residential amenity, nature and traffic safety. Where permitted, floodlights shall have fully-shielded light fixtures with cowl accessories to ensure that upward light levels are low. Planning applications shall include details of horizontal and vertical luminance levels (lux levels) of the lights and proposed hours of operation.

8.6 Major Accidents Directive/Seveso Establishments

In line with the requirements laid down by The Chemicals Act (Control of Major Accident Hazards Involving Dangerous Substances) Regulations 2015 (the “COMAH Regulations”), which implement the Seveso III Directive (2012/18/EU), the Health and Safety Authority is obliged to provide technical advice to the Council in cases of decisions taken regarding:

  • Development within the vicinity of an existing Seveso site area.
  • The proposed development of a new Seveso establishment.
  • The modification of an existing establishment.

The Planning Authority will consult with the Health and Safety Authority in relation to the relevant development referred to Schedule 8 of the Planning and Development Regulations, 2001 (as amended) and which come within the consultation distances notified by the Health and Safety. The current consultation distances are listed in Table 8-2. However, it should be noted that these are subject to change.

Table 8-2 Consultation Distances for Seveso Sites

Tier

Seveso Site

Consultation Distance

Upper Tier

European Refreshments, Sinnottstown,  Drinagh, Wexford

700m

Nitrofert Ltd, Raheen Port, New Ross

700m

Rochefreight Warehousing Ltd, Wexford Road, Rosslare Harbour.

700m

 

Lower Tier

Goulding Chemicals Ltd, Stokestown, New Ross

700m

SSE Generation Ireland Ltd, Great Island Generation Station, Campile, New Ross.

300m

Applicants should also consult with the Fire Services of Wexford County Council and the Health and Safety Authority prior to lodging any planning application.

8.8 Waste Management

8.8.1 Bring Banks and Recycling Facilities

These facilities will generally be required at appropriate locations in the following developments:

  • In conjunction with significant new commercial developments, or extensions to same. A minor offset in car parking requirements may be considered where public recycling bring facilities are provided.
  •  In conjunction with new waste infrastructure facilities. Proposals for same should include bring facilities for the acceptance of non-hazardous and hazardous wastes from members of the public and small businesses.
  • In conjunction with large scale residential and mixed use developments, proposals should provide recycling facilities to serve residents and in some appropriate locations, the wider community.

The following criteria will be considered in the assessment of the design and siting of recycling facilities and bring facilities:

  • The location and design of the recycling facility/storage should ensure that it is easily accessible both for residents and/or public and for bin collection, be insect and vermin proofed, will not present an odour problem, and will not significantly detract from the residential amenities of adjacent property or future occupants,

8.8.2 Waste Storage Facilities

The provision for the storage and collection of waste materials shall be in accordance with the guidelines for waste storage facilities in the relevant Southern Regional Waste Management Plan 2015-2021.  

Refuse storage for houses and apartments should be externally located, concealed/covered and adequate to cater for the size and number of bins normally allocated to a household. For terraced houses the most appropriate area for bins to be stored is to the front of the house, which should be located in well-designed enclosures that do not to detract from visual amenity. Access to private waste storage in residential schemes should be restricted to residents only.

8.8.3 Waste Recovery and Disposal Facilities

In assessing development proposals for or including waste recovery and waste disposal facilities, the Planning Authority will have regard to the policies, actions, targets and provisions of the Southern Region Waste Management Plan 2015-2021, relevant planning legislation, the objectives in the Plan and other relevant planning documents.

The provision of waste recovery facilities, pre–treatment infrastructure and development of indigenous secondary waste processing, including Material Recovery Facilities (MRF) and Waste Transfer Stations will be facilitated at appropriate locations within the county (see Chapter 9 Infrastructure).

With regard to large scale proposals for waste disposal installation, the Planning Authority will contribute to the Strategic Infrastructure Development (SID) process.

In the event of a conflict arising between an objective in the Southern Regional Waste Management Plan and that of the County Development Plan, the Regional Waste Management Plan objective takes precedence and a planning decision may be made on that basis.

The Planning Authority will have regard to the following when considering development proposals for waste recovery and disposal facilities:

  • The proposal shall avoid the siting of waste infrastructure or related infrastructure in SACs, SPAs and NHAs, areas protected for landscape amenity, visual amenity, geology, heritage or cultural value, or areas of flood risk,
  • Ensure that the proposal will not detract from the residential amenities of properties in the vicinity or the visual amenities of the area. In general, no new waste disposal facility or Refuse Transfer Station shall be located within 200 metres of a residence.
  • Ensure the proposal will not give rise to a traffic hazard. In this regard, the traffic impacts of the development, including road access, network safety and traffic patterns to and from the proposed facility, will be assessed in accordance with road design guidelines and/or relevant guidelines in relation to roads. Proposals will require a Traffic Impact Assessment (TIA), and
  • The proposal should ensure that SuDS is applied and that site specific solutions to surface water drainage systems are developed, which meet the requirements of the EU Water Framework Directive and associated River Basin Management Plans.

8.8.4 Agricultural Waste

Agricultural waste shall be managed in an environmentally sustainable manner in accordance with the principles set by the Rural Environment Protection Scheme, the Farm Waste Management Scheme and relevant EU and national legislation (in particular, the EC (Good Agricultural Practice for the Protection of Waters Regulations 2017 (SI  605 of 2017).

8.8.5 Contaminated Land

The redevelopment of certain brownfield sites may give rise to concerns over the release of contaminants which could possibly affect human health and/or have adverse impacts on the environment, including on ground and surface waters, soils and air quality.  Examples of such sites include those formerly used for manufacturing/industry, landfill, tanneries, petrol filling stations, oil/gas storage, and scrap yards and railway lands. Sites with other former uses may also give rise to contamination concerns.

The Council will require that sites with the potential to contain contaminants are subject to proper investigation and, if necessary, remediation, to industry best practice standards prior to redevelopment. Such site investigation and remediation should be undertaken and managed by appropriately qualified personnel, will require screening for appropriate assessment under the Habitats Directive, and may be subject to licensing/permits required under other Acts, including the Waste. The Council will have regard to relevant Government guidance and advice in this matter and will liaise with agencies such as the EPA as necessary.   
 

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