The Waterford City and County Development Plan 2022-2028 was officially launched by the Mayor of Waterford City and County, Cllr. John O’Leary.
 
The plan, which was fully adopted by Elected Members of Waterford City and County Council last month, is a statutory planning document, covering the six-year period from 2022-2028 and guides the day-to-day operation of the Planning Authority and broader strategic investment decision making.
 
The City and County Development Plan is the principal planning strategy document for the area and gives spatial expression to the physical, economic, social and environmental needs of the community, in order to support and regulate new development, enhance valued assets and amenities and protect the environment.
 
The development plan is now at the heart of a plan-led system whereby public capital investment programmes and priorities are aligned to support the adopted development strategy. This principle has been established through Project Ireland 2040 comprising both the National Planning Framework (NPF) as the State’s national spatial development strategy and the National Development Plan (NDP) as the capital investment programme to support delivery at all levels of the planning hierarchy. By ensuring good policy alignment with EU, national and regional policy and the UN SDGs, the development plan can drive investment that is targeted towards identified priorities and leverage funding and partnership opportunities at a local level.
 
Initial results from Census 2022 demonstrate that Waterford City is on target for achieving an ambitious growth target of 85,000 as set out in the National Planning Framework, by 2040.  This new development plan supports the continued achievement of these targets.  In addition, the Development Plan also provides the basis on which Local Area Plans will be prepared for parts of Waterford City, Dungarvan, Tramore and other urban towns across the county over the lifetime of the plan.
 
Mayor of Waterford City and County, Cllr. John O’Leary said the plan provides a clear roadmap to enable the city and county reach its full potential and deliver key objectives in economic development, housing, placemaking, climate action and transport.
 
“Waterford’s ambitions for the next six years are writ large in this development plan.  The public consultations yielded over 1,000 submissions. This is heartening and highlights how much the public is truly invested in Waterford’s vision for growth and improvement.”
 
“Waterford’s commitment to a proactive and dynamic approach towards sustainable social, environmental and economic development of the region is steadfast and this development plan lays the foundation for achieving these objectives.”
 
In addition to the development plan identifying the quantum of land required to facilitate the delivery of necessary housing targets, the plan also identifies regeneration sites to deliver regenerative, compact and sequential growth;  policy objectives to ensure competitive retail development, economic expansion through support for indigenous SMEs and FDI; the implementation of core strategies to ensure a low carbon future and a rural strategy to support rural communities in delivering transformative changes.
 
Following the adoption of the Waterford City and County Development Plan 2022-2028 by elected members of Waterford City and County Council, the Office of the Planning Regulator (OPR) commended the local authority on ‘a coherent and appropriate strategy for the delivery of key national planning objectives including the promotion of compact growth and town and village centre regeneration.’
 
The Development Plan and the complete suite of documents including all environmental reports and appendices is available for inspection at the following locations: