Skip to main content

COVID-19

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.

Glossary

This page will explain some of the terms and expressions we use in An Bord Pleanála.

A  B  C  D  E  F  H  I  L  N  O  P  R  S  T  U  V  W  Y

 

A

Access to information on the environment (AIE)
Under the Access to Information on the Environment Regulations, anyone is entitled to apply to An Bord Pleanála for access to environmental information that is held by, or for, An Bord Pleanála.

Acknowledgement
A document issued by a planning authority which shows you made a submission to that planning authority.

Act
A law that has been passed by the Oireachtas (parliament) and approved by the President.

Adjoining land
Bordering; be next to and joined with.

Agent
A person who acts on your behalf in an appeal, application or referral.

Appeal
A review of the original decision on a planning application made by a planning authority.

Appeal (building control)
A review of the original decision on an application made by a building control authority to either refuse or to grant subject to condition or conditions.

Appellant
An individual or organisation who makes an appeal (see also First Party, Third Party).

Applicant
An individual or organisation who makes a planning application to a planning authority (see also First Party).

Applicant (building control)
An individual or group who makes an application to a building control authority.

Appropriate assessment (AA)
An examination of a plan or project to evaluate how it might negatively affect a site which is protected under the EU Habitats Directive. (This is a directive about wildlife and nature conservation).

Back to contents

 

B

Birds Directive
A legislative act of the European Parliament and European Council to protect wild birds.

Board
The Board of An Bord Pleanála.

Building control authority
The local authority – county council, city council or city and county council– responsible for building control in its areas.

Back to contents

 

C

Commercial
Commercial developments are:

  • non-residential developments for professional, commercial or industrial purposes,
  • developments for paid or rewardable services, or
  • residential developments of two or more houses / flats.

Commercial does not include developments for agricultural purposes.

Back to contents

 

D

Disability Access Certificate
A certificate granted by a building control authority that certifies compliance of the design of certain works that the building, works or change of use if constructed in accordance with the plans, documents and information submitted would comply with the requirements of Part M of the Second Schedule to the Building Regulations.

Dispensation (building control)
Exempt from or not required to follow usual requirements of the Building Regulations.

Back to contents

 

E

Enjoyment of land
Examples include: Benefit from land; use of land.

Environmental Impact Assessment Report (EIAR)
A document prepared by an applicant that assesses the likely significant effects on the environment of a proposed development.

European site
An area that is or is proposed to be:

  • a site of Community importance,
  • special area of conservation,
  • special protection area.
Back to contents

 

F

Fire safety certificate
A certificate granted by a building control authority that certifies that the building, works, or change of use if constructed in accordance with the plans, documents and information submitted to the authority, would comply with the requirements of Part B of the Second Schedule to the Buildings Regulations.

First Party
The person who applies for planning permission for a proposed development (see also Applicant).

Freedom of information
Under the Freedom of Information Act, anyone is entitled to apply to An Bord Pleanála for access to information that is held by it and not otherwise publicly available.

Back to contents

 

H

Habitats Directive
A series of legislative acts of the European Council to conserve natural habitats and protect animals and plants that are rare, threatened or belong exclusively to a particular place.

Hoarding
A large board in a public place, used to display advertisements.

Back to contents

 

I

Inspector
A technical member of staff who makes site inspections, prepares a report on the planning case and makes a recommendation to the Board to grant or refuse permission.

Invalid
Does not meet all of the statutory requirements needed by law and regulations to be considered by us.

Back to contents

 

L

Leave to appeal
Requesting the permission of the Board to make an appeal when all of the four following reasons apply:

  1. You did not make a submission to the planning authority on a planning application.
  2. The planning authority has granted permission to that planning application. In the grant of permission, the planning authority has attached a condition or conditions that will change part of the proposed development from what was originally proposed in the planning application.
  3. Due to the condition or conditions now attached to the grant of permission, the proposed development will impact land which:
    1. you have an interest in; and
    2. is adjoining (next to or joined with) the proposed development site
  4. The impact is that it may:
    1. affect your enjoyment of the land you have an interest in, or
    2. reduce the value of the land you have an interest in, or
    3. both affect your enjoyment of the land and reduce its value.

Licence
Permission to do something.

Local authority project
Applications made by a local authority directly to An Bord Pleanála for planning permission for developments proposed to be carried out by or on behalf of the local authority. Examples include: flood works, smaller road projects and housing. Local authority projects also include compulsory land acquisition, for example: compulsory purchase orders.

Lodged, To Lodge
To give or submit something to An Bord Pleanála.

Back to contents

 

N

Natura impact statement (NIS)
A document prepared by an applicant that assesses the likely significant effects on certain nature conservation sites arising from a proposed development.

Back to contents

 

O

Observation
A document submitted by an Observer (see also Submission).

Observer (Appeals)
Any person, other than the applicant, planning authority or an appellant, who comments on an appeal (see also Observation).

Observer (Applications)
Any person, other than the applicant, who comments on the application (see also Observation).

Oral hearing
An oral hearing is a meeting to allow relevant issues in a case to be discussed and examined.

Our
An Bord Pleanála.

Back to contents

 

P

Planning and Development Act 2000; Planning and Development Acts (as amended)
An Act of the Oireachtas passed in 2000 by the Oireachtas about matters governing the planning system in Ireland. Parts of this 2000 Act have since been changed or amended by several other Acts. Together these Acts are known as the Planning and Development Acts 2000 to 2020.

Planning authority
The local authority – county council, city council, or county and city council – responsible for planning in its area.

Point of detail referral
In certain situations, a point of detail referral can ask the Board to make a decision in a case where the participants involved cannot agree (see also Referral (section 5).

Prescribed body
An organisation or body specified in regulations made by the Minister.

Public access
After a decision has been made on a case, you can view the decided planning case file within three days after the decision. This is called public access.

Back to contents

 

R

Referral (section 5)
A case where the Board decides whether a proposal requires planning permission or not (see also Point of detail referral).

Regularisation certificate
A certificate granted by a building control authority where a building has been commenced or completed without a fire safety certificate, where such a certificate is required and certifies that the building work is in compliance with Part B of the Second Schedule to the Building Regulations.

Regulations
A law or rules made by an Act or sometimes a Government minister.

Relaxation (building control)
Reduction or lessening of the usual requirements of the Building Regulations.

Retention
Planning permission for a development that has already been carried out or partially carried out.

Revised disability access certificate
A certificate granted by a building control authority which is required where:

  • an application for a disability access certificate is made before a grant of planning permission, by the subsequent permission, or
  • where significant revision is made to the design, works, extension or use of a building for which a disability access certificate has already been granted, and
  • where any revision made to the planning permission (including any conditions attached) require that the revised design complies with Part M of the regulations.

 

Revised fire safety certificate
A certificate granted by a building control authority which is required where:

  • an application for a fire safety certificate is made before a grant of planning permission, by the subsequent permission, or
  • where significant revision is made to the design, works, extension or use of a building for which a fire safety certificate has already been granted, and
  • where any revision made by the planning permission (including any conditions attached) require that the revised design complies with Part B of the regulations.

Back to contents

 

S

Site of Community importance
A site that is listed as important to the European Community and which is on a list which the European Commission has adopted under the Habitats Directive.

Special area of conservation (SAC)
A site that has been designated as a special area of conservation under the Habitats Directive.

Special protection area (SPA)
An area classified as a special protection area under the Birds Directive.

Statutory
Something that is decided, set up or controlled by statute law. Statute law is a law passed by parliament.

Statutory notice
Information required by law that we must send you or make available to the public. A statutory notice may tell you something about a case. It may also:

  • offer you the opportunity to comment, or
  • ask or require you to do something.

For example, it may offer you the opportunity to comment on information we have received.

Statutory objective period (SOP)
The time period to make a decision on a case. The time period is a target given to the Board by law depending on the type of case. For example, in planning appeals, the Statutory Objective Period is 18-weeks. In some types of cases, no time period is set by law.

Statutory requirements
Requirements needed by law for:

  • a case, observation, submission or request to be valid, or
  • some action or procedure to be carried out during the processing of a case.

Strategic development zone (SDZ)
An area of land that is designated by the Government to contain developments of economic or social importance to the State. Once designated, a draft planning scheme for the phased development of the SDZ is proposed by the local authority. Draft planning schemes can be appealed to An Bord Pleanála.

Strategic housing development (SHD)
Applications for planning permission directly to An Bord Pleanála for certain housing developments.

Strategic infrastructure development (SID)
Applications for planning permission directly to An Bord Pleanála for major infrastructure developments by local authorities, State authorities and by the private sector. .

Submission
A document on appeals or applications which may include supporting materials such as photographs, plans, drawings and technical guidance. (The document can be typed or handwritten.)

Substitute consent
An application for permission made directly to An Bord Pleanála about development already carried out and which should – but did not – have had some or all of the following assessments carried out:

  • Environmental Impact Assessment,
  • Environmental Impact Assessment Determination.
  • Appropriate Assessment.

Back to contents

 

T

Third Party (appeal)
A person appealing the decision of a planning authority on a proposed development other than the person who made the original planning application (see also Appellant).

Back to contents

 

U

Us
An Bord Pleanála.

Back to contents

 

V

Valid
Meets all statutory requirements needed by law and regulations to be considered by us.

Back to contents

 

W

We
An Bord Pleanála.

Weekend Rule
If the last date for us to receive documents is on a Saturday, Sunday, public holiday or other day when our office is closed, we can receive it by 5.30pm on the next working day that our office is open.

Back to contents

 

Y

You
You as a person, company, group, organisation or State authority.

Back to contents

 

 

This information guide is published to provide general assistance and guidance only. It is not a legal interpretation of the legislation. Readers must apply the relevant statutory provision to their own particular circumstances and, in doing so, should obtain their own expert advice if necessary.