Waterford City and County Council has begun the process of making a Development Plan for Waterford city and county.
It follows the adoption of the Southern Regional Spatial Economic Strategy earlier this year by the members of the Southern Regional Assembly.
It will take two years, with the process beginning at a pre draft phase which opened on Monday.
The public is being urged to make submissions on this significant policy document, which will shape the sustainable development and planning context for Waterford city and county.
An online consultation portal has been developed by Waterford City and County Council in partnership with Civiq.eu. The portal, which is accessed from the homepage of the Waterford Council website, provides access to relevant background documents, including a Strategic Issues Paper.
Reference information is displayed, including the background and context to the Waterford Development Plan and specific areas for consideration, including sustainable transport, economy, employment and education, and climate change and environment. A dashboard displaying details of submissions made is available and as this is the first of three opportunities for public submissions, it is important for wide-ranging public participation in this strategic planning process.
The Waterford Development Plan sits in a hierarchy of planning policy, which is agreed at national Government level. The National Planning Framework Project Ireland 2040 identifies Waterford as the principle urban centre in the South East, and recognises the need for Waterford to become a regional city of scale and significance. The growth of the city and county will complement and enhance growth of the wider city region, driving regional prosperity and improving quality of life.
The making of the Development Plan is an ideal opportunity for people who live, work and invest in Waterford to have a say in the policy and spatial framework that shapes the city and county of Waterford.
The portal and submission period is open until September 14 at www.consult.waterfordcouncil.ie.