Written Answers. - Urban Renewal Schemes.

Olwyn Enright


256 Ms Enright asked the Minister for the Environment Heritage and Local Government if a site (details supplied), which is classified as refurbishment under the urban renewal scheme, can be reclassified as new build due to the fact that the site and derelict building thereon are incapable of refurbishment. [19075/03]

I assume the question refers to the town renewal scheme which applies to Banagher. The designation of sites under the town renewal scheme was decided in the context of town renewal plans; this was in accordance with the Town Renewal Act 2000 and the 1999 guidelines on the scheme. It was a matter for each county council to prepare and submit such plans to the Department. Following submission, an independent expert advisory panel on town renewal assessed these plans. The panel's recommendations were accepted in full by the then Minister and this is the basis on which the scheme is now implemented.

The sites and incentives selected for designation by county councils, examined by the expert panel and subsequently approved for designation followed a structured and considered process. The incentives for Banagher were granted on the basis of the proposals prepared and submitted by Offaly County Council and it is not possible to amend or add to the town renewal plans at this stage.