Section 10(8) of the Planning and Development Act 2000 states that there shall be no presumption in law that any land zoned in a particular development plan (including a development plan that has been varied) shall remain so zoned in any subsequent development plan.
Section 13(1) of the Act provides that a planning authority may make a variation to a development plan which is in force and this could, inter alia, include changes to zoning objectives.
The 2007 Guidelines for Planning Authorities on Development Plans state that while the development plan should include strategic or county-wide objectives specifying the quantum and location of land, including general development boundaries for urban areas, the more detailed identification and zoning of lands involved could be undertaken in the context of local area plans.
Section 20 of the Act, as amended, provides that the making, amending or revoking of a local area plan is a reserved function of the planning authority and this would include setting or amending a development boundary for the purpose of the plan.
Copies of the legislation and Guidelines are available on my Department's website at www.environ.ie.