An Bord Pleanála

COVID-19 (Coronavirus) and An Bord Pleanála: Information

Level 5 Restrictions

Last Updated: 11 January 2021, 12:30

The Government List of Essential Services (as published by the Department of the Taoiseach on the 14 October 2020 and last updated on the 8 January 2021) under the heading "Public administration, emergency services and defence" lists specific statutory planning system activities, to the extent that they cannot be carried out remotely" as an essential service. An Bord Pleanála would come under this category.

Furthermore, Regulation 4(2)(z) of the Health Act 1947 (Section 31A – Temporary Restrictions) (Covid-19) (No. 10) Regulations 2020 provides that attendance at the offices of An Bord Pleanála to engage in a statutory planning process including making an appeal or observation or submission or inspecting a file constitutes a reasonable excuse for travelling in the context of Level 5 restrictions being in place. Part 2 of these Regulations also incorporates the Government List of Essential Services. These Regulations came into operation on the 31 December 2020.

Due to the current increased risk in relation to Covid-19 An Bord Pleanála's office has restricted access to the public.

Until further notice, members of the public should not attend the office unless it is considered absolutely necessary.

Those who need to visit our office to submit documentation must now drop off their 'post' in a drop box provided in the reception area close to the entrance door. Unfortunately, no receipt or checking of documentation will be provided or take place.

Our staff will not interact generally with members of the public in our reception area. However staff remain available by email and telephone during office hours for information and queries.

In the event that a member of the public needs to pay a fee by credit or debit card this will be facilitated.

We are operating the normal public hours of 9.15 a.m. to 5.30 p.m. Monday to Friday (other than public holidays) and you can contact us during this period by email or telephone.

We encourage you to use the alternatives to visiting our office where possible. These alternatives include:

  • Sending documents to us by post or by courier for any case.
  • Sending an observation on a Strategic Housing Development Application online.

 

Contents

General information
Timelines to submit your item
Alternatives to visiting our office
Postal Deliveries
Oral hearings and other meetings
Decision timelines
Viewing a decided case file: Public Access
Contact Us

General information

If you are considering making an appeal, observation, submission, request, or referral to An Bord Pleanála, our advice is to prepare your document or documents in advance and send to An Bord Pleanála as soon as you can and in advance of the last day allowed.

The law does not allow us to make any exceptions to the time limit rule or other statutory rules even in the exceptional circumstances of COVID-19.

We encourage you to use post, email and telephone, where possible, rather than calling into the office. This is to limit, as far as possible, unnecessary person to person contact in accordance with social distancing principles.

We are currently receiving a large number of emails and phone calls every day. We ask for your understanding if there a delay in replying to your email or answering your phone call. We will respond to all queries as soon as we possibly can.

  • Post: 64 Marlborough Street, Dublin 1, D01 V902.
  • Email addresses:
  • Phone: (01) 858 8100 or Lo-call 1890 275 175.

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Timelines to submit your item

Timelines are currently operating as normal for us to receive your:

  • appeal,
  • referral,
  • submissions or observations on an appeal or referral,
  • submissions or observations on a strategic housing development,
  • submissions or observations on a strategic infrastructure development,
  • submissions or observations in response to an existing request from An Bord Pleanála for further information on a case,
  • submissions or observations to an existing invitation for further submissions on an existing case.

However, you should note that section 251 of the Planning and Development Act 2000 provides for adjustment to the normal timelines over the period from December 24 to January 1 every year. You can find more information about adjustments to the normal timelines at www.pleanala.ie/christmas2020.htm

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Alternatives to visiting our office

Sending documents to us by post or by courier: All cases

If there is sufficient time available, please consider sending your documents to us by post or by courier rather than visiting our office. If you wish to make an appeal you can check the last dates to make an appeal on our website. If you wish to make an observation on a strategic housing development application you can check the last date on the strategic housing developments area of our website. If you wish to do something different please contact us.

It is your responsibility to make sure that documents arrive within the required time period. Items must reach us before 5.30pm on the last day of the specified time period even if postmarked in advance of a deadline. The law does not allow us to accept as valid documents which are late. If you have any concerns about your documents not reaching us in time by post or by courier and you want to visit our office to hand deliver, please plan your visit to our office by reading the information below.

You can pay fees by the post using cheques, bankers drafts or postal orders. We do not recommend cash through the post. We cannot accept debit or credit card payments or EFT by post.

We strongly recommend that you do not place any item in our letterbox outside office hours as your item may be invalid.

Sending an observation on a Strategic Housing Development Application online

An Bord Pleanála has an online service where members of the public can send their observation on a Strategic Housing Development Application to us. You pay the fee for the observation online. You can find out further information at www.pleanala.ie/shd/applications/SHD_Obs_Online.htm

This service is available only for observations on Strategic Housing Development Applications contained in this list

Information on decided case files

You can find basic information about cases by checking our website and using the search function. To find the case you want:

  • type in the 6-digit An Bord Pleanála case reference number. Current cases have numbers such as 300000, with older cases having numbers such as 234567, RL2000, PA4000, or
  • type in a geographical location or key words in the description of the proposed development.

Each decided case has on its webpage:

  • Inspector's Report
  • Board Direction
  • Board Order

If you want further information, please email our public access section at publicaccess@pleanala.ie and give them details about the decided case file. Our public access team will contact you and give you further information.

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Only visit our office if it is absolutely necessary.

If you do need to visit our office, please follow the information posters and any instructions that may be given to you by our staff or security personnel.

Planning appeals

To make sure that you have completed all the steps to make an appeal, we invite you to use the planning appeal checklist which should help you to make a valid appeal. If possible, please make your appeal in advance of the last date to make an appeal. On our website you can check what is the last day to make a planning appeal based on the date the planning authority made the decision (Chief Executive Order) on the relevant planning application.

If you want to make an observation you can use the observation checklist to check if you have completed all the necessary requirements for an observation. If possible, please make your observation in advance of the last date to make an observation.

It is preferable to minimise visits to the office at this particular time. However if it is essential that you visit the office, we request you pay fees where possible by cheque, postal order or bankers draft and include them with your document before putting them in the 'drop box' at the entrance. In the event that you need to pay a fee by credit or debit card this will be facilitated.

Strategic Housing Developments

Before you visit our office, you can check the last dates to make an observation on a current application on our website at www.pleanala.ie/shd/applications/index.htm.

The easiest and quickest way to send an observation to us on a Strategic Housing Development Application is to use our online service

It is preferable to minimise visits to the office at this particular time. However if it is essential that you visit the office, we request you pay fees where possible by cheque, postal order or bankers draft and include them with your document before putting them in the 'drop box' at the entrance. In the event that you need to pay a fee by credit or debit card this will be facilitated.

Strategic Infrastructure Developments

Before you visit our office, you can check the last dates to make an observation on a current application by contacting us at sids@pleanala.ie.

If you want to make an observation on an application you can use the observation checklist to check if you have completed all the necessary requirements for an observation. If possible, please make your observation in advance of the last date to make an observation.

It is preferable to minimise visits to the office at this particular time. However if it is essential that you visit the office, we request you pay fees where possible by cheque, postal order or bankers draft and include them with your document before putting them in the 'drop box' at the entrance. In the event that you need to pay a fee by credit or debit card this will be facilitated.

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Arriving at our office

You should not visit our office if:
  • you are feeling unwell or have:
  • a fever (high temperature - 38 degrees Celsius or above),
  • a cough - this can be any kind of cough, not just dry,
  • shortness of breath or breathing difficulties,
  • a loss or change to your sense of smell or taste.
  • you need to restrict your movements.

  • Further information on symptoms and restrictions are available on www.gov.ie/covid-19 or www.hse.ie

    If you need to visit our office please follow the information posters and any instructions of our staff and security personnel.

    If you require assistance at any point or you feel unwell, please tell a member of our staff.
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    Postal Deliveries

    An Bord Pleanála is continuing to receive postal deliveries as normal so any necessary documentation within the postal system will be delivered and processed as normal throughout this period.

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    Oral hearings and other meetings

    If an oral hearing or meeting is scheduled to take place, our staff will be in contact with you about the latest information and the arrangements for that oral hearing or meeting.

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    Decision timelines

    Some decisions may be delayed due to the Government's orders extending time limits on planning matters in the period between 29 March 2020 and 23 May 2020. This period was to be disregarded for the purpose of calculating various time limits under the Planning and Development and other related Acts.

    The duration of any such extended period will differ in individual cases. The general principle is that any original time deadline will extend beginning on 23 May 2020 by a period equal to the number of days in the original deadline that fell within the period of 29 March 2020 to 23 May 2020.

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    Viewing decided case files: Public Access

    Before you visit the office

    If you want to view a decided case file, you can contact us at publicaccess@pleanala.ie to arrange a time to view the file or files. This will also allow our staff to have the file or box available in the office when you arrive to view them.

    Due to social distancing requirements it may be necessary to limit the number of people using the public access reading facilities in our office. We request that you contact us before visiting us if you wish to view files.

    If requesting photocopies, we request that you pay charges where possible by debit or credit card, cheque, postal order or bankers draft. Our website can give you more information about fees and how to pay them.

    When you visit the office

    If you are visiting our office to view decided case files please indicate this to a member of our staff or security personnel and follow their instructions. You will be directed to an area where you can view the file.

    When you have the file you may wish to use the free self-service photography service. Except for maps, plans and certain other items, you can photograph most documents on the case file. All you will need to do is fill in a Declaration Form and hand it to the member of the public access team assisting you. You can find out more about self-service photography and viewing decided case files on our website.

    Photocopying of documents, plans and drawings remains available. You can find out the costs of photocopies in our viewing decided case files: public access guide. The photocopying service is currently very busy so please allow some time for photocopying. If documents cannot be photocopied during your visit, we will post the photocopies to you.

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    Last modified: 11/01/2021, 12:30