The strategic infrastructure provisions of the Planning and Development (Strategic Infrastructure) Act 2006 (the 2006 Act) came into effect on 31st January 2007. The Act, which amends the Planning and Development Act 2000 (the 2000 Act), provides generally for applications for permission/approval for specified private and public strategic infrastructure developments to be made directly to the Board.
Part 18 of the Planning and Development Regulations 2006 (S.I. No. 685 of 2006) (the 2006 Regulations) relating to strategic infrastructure development also came into effect on 31st January 2007.
In these Guidelines, references to sections in the Act refer to the 2000 Act, as amended, and references to articles in the Regulations refer to the Planning and Development Regulations 2001 as amended, unless otherwise stated.
There are different types of strategic infrastructure specified in the 2000 Act, as amended. These guidelines only relate to development listed in the new 7th Schedule to the 2000 Act as amended. This relates mostly to private development although applications for permission for some public infrastructure will be made through 7th Schedule procedures and applications for approval for some private infrastructure e.g. strategic gas infrastructure, will be made through other procedures. The Schedule lists the classes of projects related to major energy, transport, environmental and health infrastructure applications which, if deemed by the Board to be strategic infrastructure, must now be made directly to the Board instead of the local planning authority.
Planning Authorities should not deal with any application for development specified in the 7th Schedule unless it has been determined by the Board that the development is not a strategic infrastructure development. Should a planning authority be in any doubt as to whether a proposed development constitutes strategic infrastructure it is recommended that they advise the prospective applicant to seek an opinion from the Board prior to lodging an application with the planning authority.