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Marine Pre-Application

Maritime Area Planning: Pre-application consultations

Marine Planning and Development

Marine planning and development relates to development within the maritime area which entails a two stage process where the applicant is required to be the holder of a maritime area consent or a foreshore licence and, following this, a direct application can be made to An Bord Pleanála for permission.


Purpose of pre-application consultations

Before making a maritime area planning application for permission to the Board the prospective applicant must enter into consultations with An Bord Pleanála as required under section 287 of the Planning and Development Act 2000 as amended.
The prospective applicant is required to be in possession of a maritime area consent for the occupation of a maritime site for the purposes of the proposed development or has been granted a licence under the Foreshore Act 1933. 
As part of the consultations, it is open to the prospective applicant to request a meeting with the Board for its opinion on design options in relation to the application. This is set out in section 287A and 287B of the Act

The Board requires that the following information be submitted with the pre application consultation request:

  1. Prospective Applicant/General project details including:
    1. 1 -  MAC details.
    2. 2 - Design team proposed or Agent acting on behalf of the applicant.
    3. 3 - Consideration of whether it is anticipated separate Section 287B consultations will be required in relation to the proposed development.
    4. 4 -  Anticipated timelines. 
  1. Brief description of location and proposed development:
    1. 1 -  Brief description of site and surrounding area.
    2. 2 -  Relevant Coastal (or Planning) Authorities. 
    3. 3 -  Number of turbines proposed (if specific number not yet known range can be provided).
    4. 4 -  Output (MW) (range can be provided if not yet known).
    5. 5 -  Height of turbines and any other key infrastructure.
    6. 6 -  Location of turbines and any other key infrastructure.
  1. Drawings at appropriate scales (A1 and A3):
    1. 1 -  Site Location map sufficient to identify the maritime area in which theproposed development would be situated.
    2. 2 -  Site Layout to include MAC boundary, turbine locations, offshore substation locations, cable route(s)/landfall point(s) and other key infrastructure as appropriate. (To include distances of key infrastructure from coastline).
    3. 3 -  Photomontages – representative images from key views along the coast(note sample only for PAC purposes).
    4. 4 -  Maps of coastline and Designated Areas. 
  1. Onshore development (if applicable/known at this stage):
    1. 1 -  Details and drawings of proposed onshore development including grid connection, cable layout, substation upgrades, operation and maintenance Buildings and any other relevant infrastructure.
    2. 2 -  Submit details of pre-application consultations held or planning applications(if any), and/or proposed consenting approach/timeframe.
  1. Brief Policy Context for proposed development.
  1. Details of consultations held to date or scheduled with the public, prescribed bodies and any other relevant bodies, or organisations. Details of consultations to include links to any dedicated project website and/or project information portal that is in place and available to the public along with dates at which such sites were established.
  1. Key environmental considerations including Schedule 7A of the Planning and Development Regulations 2001 (as amended) information requirements. (Prospective Applicant is advised that information provided in this regard should also include a schedule of studies or assessments that have been undertaken or are proposed to be undertaken and any associated timeframes)
  1. Anticipated key activities/In-combination effects with other existing and future users of the maritime area.
  1. Details of proposed port(s) used for transport and/or construction activities (if known)
All details provided to the Board should be submitted in both digital and hard copy.

The idea of pre-application consultations is to try to make sure that an application for permission is of a high standard. This can mean that before an application is made that an applicant:

  • knows the correct procedures to follow,
  • has an opportunity to consider the proper planning and sustainable development,
  • has an opportunity to address and consider the effects of the proposed development on the environment and habitats.

Pre-application consultations also allow An Bord Pleanála to advise an applicant if there are specific issues with the proposal. An Bord Pleanála may also advise the applicant on public consultation and the procedures for the making of the application as follows:

  • The documents required to accompany the application,
  • the need to create an internet website for the purposes of publishing the application documentation,
  • the publication of notices and the timelines for the making of submissions/observations in relation to the application,
  • prescribed bodies to be notified of the application and
  • other matters relating to National Policy, principles of proper planning and sustainable development and the environment.
The Board may, at any time, conclude a consultation where it considers appropriate to do so



The Board is currently preparing a Schedule of fees for Maritime Area Case
The current legislation does not provide for a fee for the making of a pre-application consultation request under section 287 of the Planning Act 2000 as amended.  However, the Board can recover its costs in this regard.