Chapter 6: Economic Development

closeddate_range19 Feb, 2016, 10:00am - 29 Apr, 2016, 5:30pm

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6.1 Background

The Draft Plan outlines the economic vision for the County over the coming Plan period with policies across a range of business and industry sectors, and specific objectives ensuring that sustainable economic activity and employment creation are supported and facilitated.

The Chapter has been prepared, mindful of the challenging conditions that prevailed at the time of the adoption of the previous Development Plan in 2011, and of the positive signs of recovery that are increasingly apparent. The economic strategy outlined below seeks to strengthen Fingal’s existing economic profile, maximise on the County’s broad range of locational, infrastructural and competitive advantages, respond to recent economic, demographic and employment trends, and be consistent within the new governance structures at the regional and local government levels.

Overview of Fingal’s Economic Profile

Fingal is a key administrative area within the newly established East and Midlands Regional Assembly (EMRA), and plays a strong supporting role to the Dublin City Gateway, which is the country’s economic growth centre. Fingal is the chosen location for thousands of businesses across all the main sectors of economic activity. The County is home to a diverse range of employers, varying in scale from major multi-national companies, Irish small and medium enterprises (SMEs) and Fingal based start-ups with small numbers of employees. There has been a steady rise in the number of businesses created in the County since 2011, with 5,876 [1] recorded in 2014. The growth rate is reflective of the improving economic conditions, trends which are forecast to continue.

Fingal performs strongly in the Information and Communication Technology (ICT) sector, with leading companies such as Synopsys, IBM, PayPal and Symantec represented in the Blanchardstown area. Similarly, the Pharmaceutical/ Healthcare sector is well established in Fingal by companies such as Bristol Myers-Squibb, Alexion, Helsinn Birex, Organon and Mylan. The Aviation sector is a major employer and includes Aer Lingus, Dublin Airport Authority, Cityjet, Servisair and Ryanair. The Agri-Food Sector, a key employment sector for rural communities, includes enterprises such as Keelings, Country Crest, Sam Dennigan and Donnellys. The Retail Sector, and other aspects of the domestically trading enterprise base, are also an important source of employment with regionally significant shopping centres in Blanchardstown and Swords, retail parks and retailers with a national-draw such as Ikea [2].

Fingal also has a significant public service employment base through Fingal County Council, the Health Service Executive (HSE) with a major employment centre at Connolly Hospital Blanchardstown, and the Department of Education with a major employment centre at the Institute of Technology Blanchardstown.

The Aviation and Agri-Food sectors, in particular, represent unique opportunities for Fingal’s local economy due to the location of Dublin Airport in the County and of the excellent reputation of the County’s horticultural and agri-business sector. Both these sectors offer many opportunities for further development and expansion. The economic strategy in the Development Plan focuses on maximising existing performing sectors, fostering growth opportunities and identifying areas for job creation.

Economic Trends

Following previous contraction and stagnation in the country’s economy, the recent performance of the Irish economy shows robust recovery. Central Statistics Office (CSO) data reports GDP growth of 1.4% in 2013 and 5.2% in 2014, making Ireland the fastest growing economy in the Eurozone. The outlook from the Department of Finance, the Economic Social Research Institute (ESRI) and Central Bank of Ireland is that robust growth will continue in the medium term. The CSO calculates an increase of 6.7% in gross domestic product (GDP) and an increase of 5.3% in gross national product (GNP) in the year between the Q2 2014 and Q2 2015 [3]. The official Government forecast is for growth of 6.2% in 2015, 4.3% in 2016 and about 3% per annum thereafter.

A key trend for 2015 identified by the CSO and ESRI is the rise in personal consumption, which is interpreted as households experiencing the benefits of the economic recovery. In addition, the investment component of GDP has belatedly recovered. This will have clear implications for economic development in Fingal and the wider economy.

Demographic Trends

The CSO Census figures for 2011 indicate that the population of Fingal totalled 273,991 persons, representing a growth rate of 14% from the 2006 total of 239,992. This was the third highest growth rate on a County basis, and a notably higher increase than the national rate of 8.1% growth during the same intercensal period. These high population growth rates (following from those recorded in the previous census of 2002), have resulted in notable differences in Fingal’s age profile from the national profile.

Analysis of the 2011 figures indicates that Fingal has a significantly larger cohort of 20 to 40 year old persons than the national equivalent, accounting for almost 20% of Fingal’s population. Additionally, Fingal has a larger cohort of children under the age of 10 years. The economic requirements of these age groups need to be anticipated and responded to in the Development Plan period, for example by ensuring that a mix of employment opportunities are created, that a diverse range of third level education offer is available, and that retailing requirements for children and young families are met.

Employment and Educational Trends

Recent data from the CSO provides favourable indications in relation to national unemployment figures, with the CSO estimating a fall in the unemployment rate of 8.9% for October 2015 [4], representing a seven year low. The ESRI has forecast unemployment levels to fall to 9% by the end of 2015 and to 8% by the end of 2016 [5].

These 2015 figures represent a significant improvement from the rate recorded in 2011. The CSO Census figures for 2011 indicated that Fingal had a labour active population of 119,276 persons and had the highest labour force participation rate in the country. In relation to unemployment, Fingal had a rate of 16%, the second lowest unemployment rate in the country and notably less than the national average of 19% [6]. While these figures indicate that Fingal was performing better than the national averages, areas of markedly high unemployment were recorded in Balbriggan and Tyrrelstown.

From a review of census employment figures across the economic sectors for 2006 and 2011, Fingal performed strongly in highly skilled sectors of the enterprise base including professional services, transport and communications, and commerce and trade.

In terms of educational attainment, Fingal’s population performed relatively well where 37.9% of the Fingal population were recorded as possessing a tertiary-level of education, coupled with an established profile of predominantly skilled, professional, managerial and technical orientated socio-economic groups.

Local Government Reform and Economic Development

The Local Government Reform Act 2014 introduced new structural arrangements, plans and strategies at the local and regional government levels. Local authorities are required to prepare Local Economic and Community Plans (LECPs), while regional assemblies are to prepare Regional Spatial and Economic Strategies (RSESs). Local Community Development Committees (LCDCs), Strategic Policy Committees (SPCs) and Local Enterprise Offices (LEOs) have been established within local authorities, and a new regional assembly structure has been established and Fingal is located within the East and Midlands Regional Assembly (EMRA).

As part of the reform process, these new structural arrangements have been given increased responsibilities for economic development. Fingal’s Economic Department and the SPC for Economic Development and Enterprise are responsible for the economic elements of the LECP. The Council have prepared its LECP, which was adopted by the elected members in December 2015. The LECP has a six year time frame and its contents are required to align with the Development Plan. It is envisaged that the LECP will provide a focused emphasis on local economic development including actions and measures to ensure its promotion and facilitation.

The preparation of the RSES by the EMRA is anticipated in the short-term. Fingal’s Development Plan, and those of the other EMRA local authorities, will need to align with the RSES once it is finalised and adopted.

Role of the Development Plan in Economic Development

Notwithstanding that the Development Plan operates within a network of other influencing plans and strategies, the Plan has a number of important roles to perform in devising the economic strategy for the County. In relation to Fingal’s economy, the Development Plan is responsible for a number of key functions. These include to:

  • Provide a sufficient quantum of appropriately zoned lands to facilitate enterprise opportunities and employment creation;
  • Ensure that such lands are logically and coherently located to maximise on existing and planned infrastructure, particularly in respect of public transportation, water services, and telecommunications;
  • Identify the key business and industry sectors, anticipate their requirements in terms of building types, formats, and sizes and range of supporting and ancillary services;
  • Encourage the creation of clusters within sectors thereby maximising on associated economies of scale;
  • Foster positive communities and create highly successful, attractive places for people to live and work within, that in turn attract various businesses and employees with different skill sets; and
  • Provide a consistent approach to economic development that in turn generates certainty and clarity for applicants, developers and investors involved in the development process.

The standards and requirements that are applicable to economic forms of development in the development management process are included in Chapter 12.

6.2 Strategy for Economic Development

Overview

The strategy for Fingal’s economic development over the coming Plan period has five core elements, which are summarised as follows:

  1. Achieving sustainable economic development, ensuring appropriate forms of employment are located proximate to residential developments, promoting economic clusters and regenerating obsolete or inefficient economic lands;
  2. Maximising the competitive advantages of being part of the Dublin City Region and the location of regionally and nationally important pieces of infrastructure;
  3. Identifying key economic sectors where opportunities exist for enterprise creation and employment growth, and focusing on those particularly relevant for Fingal;
  4. Growing and facilitating a highly skilled and educated workforce; and
  5. Ensuring proposals for economic development are served by high quality supporting infrastructure with sufficient capacity.

Sustainable Economic Development

Foremost, the strategy follows the principles of proper planning and sustainable development whereby Fingal will seek to attract a range of employment types, across business and industry sectors, and at the most appropriate and accessible locations, minimising the requirement for undue commuting and improving the quality of life for Fingal residents.

Sustainable economic development also can be achieved through clustering. A key economic policy concept, whereby enterprises and industries that have common features cluster together in locations in order to achieve economies of scale and derive the benefits associated from networking opportunities, innovation, synergies, sharing a skilled workforce, and the use of developed infrastructure. Clustering occurs in Fingal across a range of sectors and in a number of locations, including the ICT sector in Blanchardstown, the Pharmaceutical sector in both the Swords area and in Blanchardstown/ Mulhuddart area, the Aviation sector in proximity to Dublin Airport, and the Agri-Food sector in rural locations principally to the north of the County. Due to the proven advantages of economic clusters, this approach to enterprise and employment location will be continued.

The role of clustering is a central pillar of national enterprise policy. In support of the aim of building resilience and achieving a step-change in enterprise performance, the Government’s recent medium-term policy statement Enterprise 2025 commits to a number of steps with regard to cluster promotion [7]. In particular, policy will involve the roll-out of a National Clustering Initiative in the key sectors of strength building in order to build on existing initiatives. The objective will be to ‘stimulate more extensive clustering on a sustained basis, at a scale and depth that delivers to enterprise policy goals and has visibility and stature in an international context.’ Given Fingal’s existing sectors of strength, this national policy approach will be of central relevance at a local level.

Undertaking a sustainable approach to economic development will ensure the most effective and efficient use of land and services, which are finite resources. To most effectively secure the regeneration of obsolete or underutilised areas, appropriate and site-specific policies to promote their redevelopment is required. Initiatives, such as those planned for under the Urban Regeneration and Housing Act 2015, which incentivise development and encourage redevelopment and investment will likely prove important means of reversing these trends over the coming Plan period.



Objective ED01

Ensure that there is a sufficient quantum of zoned lands to facilitate a range of enterprise development and a mix of employment creation across all business and industry sectors within Fingal.



Objective ED02

Ensure that economic development zonings are logically and coherently located to maximise upon infrastructural provision, particularly in relation to locating high-employee generating enterprise and industry proximate to high capacity public transport networks and links thereby reducing reliance on private car transport.



Objective ED03

Prioritise locating quality employment and residential developments in proximity to each other in order to reduce the need to travel, and ensure that suitable local accommodation is available to meet the needs of workers in the County.



Objective ED04

Support existing successful clusters in Fingal, such as those in the ICT, pharmaceutical, aviation and agri-food sectors, and promote new and emerging clustering opportunities across all economic sectors within the County.



Objective ED05

Promote the regeneration of obsolete and/ or underutilised buildings and lands that could yield economic benefits, with appropriate uses and subject to the proper planning and development of the area.



Objective ED06

Identify business parks and industrial estates that are in need of regeneration and revitalisation in line with sustainable measures, and engage with all relevant stakeholders and interested parties to encourage their regeneration and revitalisation.



Objective ED07

Utilise the measures and powers available to Fingal to encourage and promote the regeneration of areas in need of renewal, for instance in underperforming or outdated commercial and/ or industrial areas, and in town and village centres where higher vacancy rates exist.



Objective ED08

Recognise the impact of significant industrial developments in specific urban and residential areas. These industrial centres are vital for both the economic development of the County and the state and are a significant source of income for the local authority. Provision should be made for increased investment in these specific areas in recognition of their importance to maintaining a vibrant rates base.

Strategic Regional Position

Fingal has a number of competitive advantages that the economic strategy for the County will seek to maximise upon. These advantages include Fingal’s strategic location within the EMRA, being part of the Dublin City Region and being included within the Dublin-Belfast Economic Corridor.

City regions are critically important for economic development, and Dublin is the country’s only city of an international scale [8]. On its own, the Dublin region (comprising the four Dublin local authorities) comprised 41.9% of the national GDP in 2012.

There are a number of primary infrastructural assets associated with Fingal that are also of regional and indeed national importance. These are located within and/ or traverse the County, and include Dublin Airport; the motorway networks of the M50, M1 (which also provides access to Dublin Port via the Port Tunnel), N2/ M2 and N3/ M3; and the rail links of the Dublin-Belfast inter-city route, the DART and suburban rail service.

The Dublin-Belfast Economic Corridor is a spatial and economic concept included in the National Spatial Strategy 2002-2020 and in the 2011-2017 Development Plan, and of continuing relevance to Fingal. The potential of the Corridor is further enhanced by the strong performance of the Belfast city region in terms of investment attraction and high quality employment creation. The benefits associated with the Corridor arise from the settlements along its length becoming centres for focused development. The economic integrity of the Corridor can be enhanced through the facilitation of a critical mass in a physical and economic sense within existing settlements. At a strategic level, the Corridor concept provides the possibility of a series of development opportunities in towns along the M1 motorway and the Dublin-Belfast rail line subject to the requirements of proper planning and sustainable development, the settlement hierarchy and the provision of transport infrastructure. For the integrity of the Corridor to be sustained and protected, only appropriate developments will be permitted at certain locations within the Fingal Settlement Strategy.



Objective ED09

Maximise the sustainable economic potential of Fingal’s, through sustainable means, being part of the Dublin City Region, the County’s unique strengths and its advantageous position within the East and Midlands Regional Assembly.



Objective ED10

Maximise sustainable economic opportunities associated with the presence of key infrastructural assets within the County including Dublin Airport, the national motorway network, railway services, and the close proximity to Dublin City and Dublin Port via the Port Tunnel.



Objective ED11

Ensure that Fingal plays a pivotal role in the promotion of Dublin as the primary Gateway in the Eastern and Midlands Region through engaging and collaborating with the other Dublin local authorities and the East and Midlands Regional Assembly.



Objective ED12

Realise the benefits associated with the Dublin-Belfast Economic Corridor through supporting appropriate forms of development at key locations in accordance with the Fingal Settlement Strategy.



Objective ED13

Engage and collaborate with adjoining local authorities and regional assemblies, as appropriate, to promote the continued economic development of the Dublin–Belfast Economic Corridor.

Sectoral Opportunities and Stakeholder Engagement

The country’s economic recovery and addressing unemployment levels have been key Government objectives since the economic downturn. The Government prepared a number of policy frameworks to address these issues including the National Recovery Plan 2011-2014, and A Strategy for Growth 2014-2020. In 2012, the Government initiated the targeted and driven Action Plan for Jobs (APJ) process, and has delivered a national Plan annually, with the Action Plan for Jobs 2015 issued most recently in January 2015. In addition, regional modules of the Action Plan for Jobs are being designed, aiming to address specific issues that arise at a regional level. The Dublin Region Action Plan is anticipated in early 2016.

The 2015 APJ identifies five strategic ambitions [9] to deliver on:

  • To support 100,000 additional jobs by 2016;
  • To get Ireland back to a top-five ranking in international competitiveness;
  • To stimulate the domestic economy and generate employment in locally traded sector;
  • To build an indigenous engine of growth that drives up the export market share of Irish companies; and
  • To build world-class clusters in key sectors of opportunity.

Fingal, as a key authority within the EMRA, is strongly placed to transform national policy into a locally applied strategy, and to play a pivotal role in achieving targets set at national level, particularly in relation to employment creation, stimulating the domestic economy and building world class clusters.

The annual APJ process outlines the Government’s focus in relation to policy priorities and rolling funding allocations for the different sectors of the economy. The APJ strategy is multifaceted and involves driving export growth across the economy, supporting Irish based enterprises in international markets, and stimulating the domestic economy through local employment and structural reforms. There are additional supports identified such as improving skills provision, boosting entrepreneurship, and increasing the levels of research, development and innovation for the benefit of enterprise throughout the economy [10].

The economic strategy for Fingal has regard to the current national economic context, which identifies the key sectors of the economy and the potential areas of future growth during the Plan period. The strategy for Fingal’s local economy therefore focuses on implementing national economic policy for these key sectors, in particular ones that are especially relevant and advantageous for Fingal, and seeks to anticipate and respond to sectoral requirements. This is also consistent with the Government’s medium-term enterprise policy, Enterprise 2025. Key sectors include: Green Economy (with a focus on Clean Technology); Financial Services; Information and Communications Technology (ICT); Research, Development and Innovation; Manufacturing (including Bio-Pharmaceuticals); Aviation Services; Retail; Tourism; Agri Food; and Marine. While all the sectors are important to Fingal’s economy, of particular relevance for Fingal are the growth opportunities that have been identified at national level in the internationally trading services, manufacturing, aviation and agri food sectors.

Through the identification of these key economic sectors, appropriate policies and objectives are included in the Development Plan that can anticipate each sector’s requirements and are sufficiently flexible to respond to opportunities and challenges within each sector.

The implementation of the strategy will be successfully achieved through engagement, collaboration and partnership with a number of key stakeholders. These include the new structures within Fingal that are focussed on the local economy, the Economic Development and Enterprise SPC and the LEO. Additionally, there are the national enterprise support agencies, IDA Ireland and Enterprise Ireland (EI). IDA Ireland supports a range of overseas companies from small high growth businesses to large multinationals, and focuses on attracting foreign direct investment (FDI). EI is responsible for the development and growth of Irish enterprises in world markets, and on securing international start-up businesses.



Objective ED14

Promote inclusive job rich growth by supporting employment creation across the County and across employment and industry sectors.



Objective ED15

Maximise the amount of employment growth and enterprise creation across all economic sectors and ensure that growth is distributed in a sustainable manner across the County in accordance with the Settlement Strategy.



Objective ED16

Liaise and coordinate with Fingal’s Local Community Development Committee, the Economic Development and Enterprise SPC and the Local Enterprise Office to ensure that themes and goals included in the Local Economic Community Plan are supported by policies and objectives in the Development Plan, as appropriate.



Objective ED17

Actively seek and facilitate continued opportunities for investment in and development of FDI and indigenous enterprises at appropriate locations in the County through engagement and collaboration with the relevant national enterprise agencies.

Education Links

It is vitally important for the development of the local economy and the wider regional economy, that Fingal has a well-educated workforce, especially with third level attainment. A key component of the County’s educational infrastructure is the Institute of Technology in Blanchardstown (ITB). The ITB will form part of the new Technological University of Dublin (TUD), a planned union of Dublin Institute of Technology (DIT) and Institute of Technology Tallaght (IIT). Additionally, Dublin City University (DCU), Dublin Institute of Technology (DIT) and Trinity College Dublin (TCD) are just outside the Fingal administrative area and as such, forms part of the educational infrastructure accessible to Fingal residents.



Objective ED18

Recognise the strong link between a well-educated workforce and economic prosperity, support continued educational investment in the County and promote collaboration with third level institutions located outside of Fingal.



Objective ED19

Facilitate and promote synergies between education, technology and industry with an emphasis on participation on education labour market activation measures in order to improve economic development and life-long learning in Fingal.

Supporting Infrastructure

A successful and sustainable local economy is dependent upon the existence of supporting infrastructure that is of high quality and has sufficient capacity. This is particularly relevant for the provision of public transport, water and waste water services, broadband, international connectivity and energy supply. Fingal will engage with service providers to ensure that the required infrastructure is provided in appropriate locations identified for enterprise and employment growth. However, the feasibility of such development will be determined on the availability of services, and a sequential approach to economic development based on the presence of supporting infrastructure may be appropriate.



Objective ED20

Liaise and engage with all relevant public service providers to ensure that zoned lands for economic development purposes are serviced in a timely fashion to facilitate opportunities for employment and enterprise creation.



Objective ED21

Require that proposals for economic development are served by quality supporting infrastructure with sufficient capacity. A sequential approach may be used for assessing economic developments to ensure their appropriate and sustainable delivery.

6.3 The Green Economy

The Green Economy refers to an increasingly sustainable approach that has been advocated in recent years for undertaking and engaging in economic activity. It ‘encompasses a range of activities, spread across different sectors of the economy, which have the common objective of providing goods and services in a sustainable way that reduce the impact on the environment' [11]. There are various government frameworks supporting the Green Economy and advocating implementation of its key principles. The Green Economy approach to economic development has been identified as an area of significant growth with potential for notable enterprise and employment creation. The ‘green’ potential has been identified in sectors and/ or activities such as research and development, innovation, energy efficiency, transportation, agriculture, food production, marine, tourism, and procurement.

An example of a Green Economy project is The Green Way, of which Fingal is one of six founding members [12]. The initiative supports innovative clean technologies and connects organisations that have developed clean technology products and solutions with growth opportunities.



Objective ED22

Ensure that a sustainable approach is taken to enterprise development and employment creation across all sectors of the Fingal economy in accordance with the Green Economy national frameworks relevant to each sector.



Objective ED23

Engage with all relevant government stakeholders, enterprise agencies and sectoral representatives in pursuing ‘green’ approaches to economic development, and actively collaborate with key industry and educational bodies to promote Fingal based initiatives across the economic sectors.



Objective ED24

Support and resource The Green Way project as a showcase of Green Economy initiatives that are operational in the Fingal area.

6.4 Financial Services

The financial services sector is a valuable sector in the national economy, employing some 35,000 people, and identified as a growth area [13]. The financial services and banking sector offers high value forms of employment, requiring a highly skilled workforce and quality employment environments. At the regional level, Dublin City and in particular, the Docklands area dominates as the locational centre for the sector. At present Fingal has a modest financial services base with the highest concentrations in Swords and Blanchardstown, primarily within existing business parks and enterprise campuses.

Fingal needs to maximise on the growth opportunities identified for this sector, and be considered as an alternative employment location to employees in this sector that are Fingal residents. In order to attract and facilitate the financial services sector in Fingal, certain conditions are required including the creation of high quality physical environments and the provision of supporting infrastructure.



Objective ED25

Promote the growth of the financial and banking sector in Fingal by facilitating the conditions conducive to such development including the creation of high quality physical environments offering a range of building and office accommodation types, supported through the provision of the necessary services and public transport infrastructure.

6.5 Information and Communications Technology

The Information and Communications Technology (ICT) sector encompasses software, IT services, electronics and hardware, and communications services [14]. The sector has a manufacturing component for semi-conductors, computer hardware, microelectronics and telecommunications equipment and devices, and a strong focus on research and development. The sector has been recognised as being of national economic importance for a number of years, with national frameworks pursuing policies to attract leading multinational companies, while a strong indigenous software industry has developed in association. Recent national policy has focussed on developing ICT skills capability so that the country can become the location of choice for mobile ICT investment and for entrepreneurs to set up, grow and locate their ICT businesses in Ireland [15].

Fingal has been to the fore in attracting key enterprises in the ICT sector, and over the previous decade a strong and dynamic ICT cluster has developed in the Blanchardstown/ Dublin 15 area with multinational companies such as Synopsys, IBM, PayPal and Symantec being present.

Fingal needs to continue to grow the ICT presence in the County and to maximise on the growth opportunities identified for this sector. In order to attract and facilitate enterprises in the ICT sector in Fingal, certain conditions are required including the creation of high quality physical environments and the provision of supporting infrastructure.

In the future, there will be opportunities to build on the existing enterprise base and develop strengths in emerging digital segments and in the strategic growth area of analytics and big data. This will require a range of actions including steps to develop and attract suitable human capital and facilitation of appropriate technological infrastructure.



Objective ED26

Promote the continued growth of the ICT sector in Fingal by creating high quality built environments offering a range of building sizes, types and formats, supported by the targeted provision of necessary infrastructure.



Objective ED27

Engage and collaborate with key stakeholders, relevant agencies, and sectoral representatives to develop the ICT sector in Fingal and to ensure that the economic potential of the sector is secured for the benefit of the local economy, and national economy.

6.6 Manufacturing

National policy on the future development of manufacturing has described the sector as encompassing a broad range of activities from research and development through design, production, logistics and distribution [16], and refers to production activities in food, medical devices, pharmaceuticals, engineering and green technologies. Forfas have estimated that there are approximately 206,000 people employed across the sector [17], with productivity in manufacturing increasingly steadily in recent years.

The CSO undertook analysis for 2012 on industrial production, principally including manufacturing activities. The Dublin region recorded approximately 21%, or €21bn worth, of gross national industrial output. Of the total number of persons engaged in industrial units at a national level, 54.7% were employed in Irish owned units, with the remainder 45.3% in foreign owned enterprises, and the Dublin region closely mirrored these national averages. Furthermore, of the total number of persons employed in the Dublin region, 7.3% or 39,800 persons worked in the industry sector, including manufacturing activities. The Dublin Region had 19,400 people employed in SME industrial companies, the highest region in the country [18]. To capitalise on these trends, promoting and further developing growth opportunities in the manufacturing sector would be particularly advantageous to Irish and indeed Fingal based small and medium sized businesses.

Fingal needs to stimulate the opportunities in the manufacturing sector, thereby promoting the County as the location of choice for a range of manufacturing enterprises. In similarity with the other economic sectors, the Council needs to create high quality built environments offering a range of building sizes and formats, supported by the orderly provision of necessary infrastructure.

Additionally, much of the national focus on the manufacturing sector has been on the skills base of different components within the sector and the importance of developing these [19]. There are opportunities through Fingal’s third level educational system represented by ITB and networking with other third level institutions such as DIT, IIT, DCU and TCD for Fingal to contribute to this process, thereby facilitating enterprise and employment creation. The relevant objectives relating to economic development and educational links are outlined above in Section 6.2.



Objective ED28

Promote the growth of the manufacturing sector in Fingal by responding to the varying needs and requirements of the different components within the sector and by creating high quality built environments offering a range of building sizes and formats, supported by the targeted provision of necessary infrastructure.

6.7 Aviation Sector

As the administrative area in which Dublin Airport is located, the aviation sector is one of the most important components of Fingal’s local economy. The aviation sector is multifaceted, while being primarily associated with passenger travel, the sector includes areas such as aviation safety, security, regulation, governance, financing, air cargo, aircraft maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO), aircraft leasing, ground handling, ground transport, catering, and customer services.

National Aviation Policy

At a national level, as we are a peripheral country in Europe, air transport is essential for trade, inward investment, and tourism. The requirements for increased connectivity, to proactively develop aviation enterprise and to maximise the aviation sector’s contribution to economy have been identified in national policy. In August 2015, the Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport issued A National Aviation Policy for Ireland. The Policy outlines different aspects of the sector ranging from safety, sustainability, connectivity, airport networks and infrastructure, regulation, financing and training.

The Policy identifies the aviation sector as a major contributor to the national economy generating €4.1bn directly to GDP comprising €1.9bn from aviation, €1.3bn through the supply chain and €0.9bn from associated spending by people employed in aviation. The sector supports 26,000 jobs directly and a further 16,000 in the supply chain [20]. Notwithstanding the important contribution through direct and indirect output, the predominant contribution to the Irish economy is in the provision of international connectivity. Among the most distinctive features of the Irish economy is the share of the national economy accounted for by trade. In 2014, the combined value of exports and imports was over €140 billion [21]. Dublin Airport is critical in enabling trade, which for a small open economy such as Ireland, is a national imperative. In this regard the Airport is also critical to prospects for the tourism industry on a national basis.

The Policy is committed to creating an environment in which the sector can maximise its potential for the wider economy. Three principal goals are identified in relation to national economic development and due to the role envisaged for Dublin Airport, have important implications for Fingal’s economic strategy for the coming Plan period.

The goals are as follows:

  • To enhance Ireland’s connectivity by ensuring safe, secure and competitive access responsive to the needs of business, tourism and consumers;
  • To foster the growth of aviation enterprise in Ireland to support job creation and position Ireland as a recognised global leader in aviation; and
  • To maximise the contribution of the aviation sector to Ireland’s economic growth and development. [22]

In essence, increased connectivity is to be achieved through facilitating a competitive number of airline operators that can increase passenger capacity and offer a larger and wider range of short and long haul destinations. The greater potential for aviation enterprise is identified through growth in areas such as air cargo services, aircraft leasing, and aircraft maintenance; while ways in which the sector can further contribute include ‘general aviation’ opportunities, research and development in clean engine technology and sustainable fuels, education and training innovations.

Dublin Airport as a Secondary Hub

Dublin Airport is of strategic importance to national social and economic policy. Strong growth is forecast in air services and passenger traffic within the lifetime of the Development Plan [23], a significant proportion of which will be catered for at Dublin Airport.

The Government’s policy is to develop Dublin Airport as a vibrant secondary hub airport, competing effectively with the UK and other European airports for the expanding global aviation services market [24]. An expansion in air service connections for business, tourism, cultural and educational purposes can in turn yield economic benefits.

For Dublin Airport to be developed as a secondary hub, it requires a sufficient level of airport infrastructure, including quality terminal facilities, runway capacity and surface access. The restrictive nature of the existing runway network at Dublin Airport is highlighted whereby using current aircraft fleets, it is not possible to reach many emerging markets and new city destinations from the existing runway at Dublin Airport [25]. Dublin Airport needs to have sufficient capacity and runways of adequate length to enable services to operate to global emerging markets without weight restriction. In this regard, the provision of a second runway at Dublin Airport is required to ensure future connectivity and to deliver growth. This is an important element of Ireland’s competitiveness as an investment destination.



Objective ED29

Engage and collaborate with key stakeholders, relevant agencies and sectoral representatives to ensure that Dublin Airport is developed and promoted as a secondary hub to capitalise on the associated wider economic benefits for Fingal and the wider region.



Objective ED30

Ensure that the required infrastructure and facilities are provided at Dublin Airport so that the aviation sector can develop further and operate to its maximum sustainable potential, whilst taking into account the impact on local residential areas, and any negative impact such proposed developments may have on the sustainability of similar existing developments in the surrounding area.

Further information on the infrastructural requirements associated with the provision of the second runway at Dublin Airport is contained in the Dublin Airport section of Chapter 7 Movement and Infrastructure.

Dublin Airport: Economic Impact

Analysis of the economic impacts associated with Dublin Airport is contained in Dublin Airport Economic Impact Study undertaken for the Dublin Airport Authority (DAA). These impacts are in terms of employment, income/ wages and gross value added (GVA), and are measured in relation to flight activity and global connectivity; direct, indirect, induced and catalytic impacts; economic contribution to the national economy; and forecasts on economic impacts associated with continued growth, the second runway and commercial development adjacent to the airport.

Direct employment associated with the operation of Dublin Airport (including the DAA, airlines, air traffic control, ground handlers, airport security, immigration, customs, airport retail) amounts to 15,700 jobs or 14,000 full-time equivalent jobs (FTEs). The total income/ wages of these employees is €639 million, and the total direct GVA generated by Dublin Airport is estimated to be nearly €1.3 billion, equivalent to 0.7% of national GDP in 2013. The Study projects multiplier impacts (indirect and induced) associated with the direct employment figures and estimates that the total employment supported by activities at Dublin Airport is 37,300 jobs (33,100 FTEs), earning a total of €1.4 billion [26]. The Study contextualises these estimates by highlighting that the number of direct, indirect and induced jobs associated with Dublin Airport is the equivalent of employing the entire town of Swords [27].

Separate analysis shows that in Ireland, the economic impacts of airports is higher on average than other European Airports, when measured as a share of GDP [28]. In addition, the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform has produced estimates of the likely employment contribution of various forms of capital investment [29]. This is important in the context of potential expansion of capacity at Dublin Airport. The estimates are as follows:

  • A €1 million increase in construction investment leads to an increase of around 12 direct and indirect job years [30]
  • A €1 million increase in investment in machinery and equipment leads to an increase of around 0.05 – 3 direct and indirect job years
  • A €1 million increase in spending on repair and installation of machinery, computer services and other ancillary activities leads to an increase of around 8-10 direct and indirect job years

As such, Dublin Airport is considered to be an essential component of Fingal’s local economy that must be supported, and is a readily accessible location for existing and future employment for Fingal residents. Notwithstanding the economic importance of Dublin Airport as outlined above, the Council must achieve a balance between promoting the potential of the aviation sector and safeguarding the primary operational role of Dublin Airport as the Country’s main international airport.

While the key role of the airport is in supporting connectivity, trade and tourism, the importance of the airport in the local economy also relates to the provision of a range of employment opportunities that span a spectrum of skills levels. This is critical in bringing balance to the economy of Fingal.



Objective ED31

Ensure an appropriate balance is achieved between developing the unique potential of Dublin Airport as an economic generator and major employer in the County and protecting its core operational function as the Country’s main international airport.



Objective ED32

Balance the impact of expansion of aviation and the important strategic issue of reducing carbon emissions.



Objective ED33

Engage with and support the DAA and other employment providers in aviation uses associated with Dublin Airport to create quality and easily accessible employment opportunities for Fingal residents.

6.8 Retail Sector

Overview

The economic importance of the retail sector to the national economy is identified with some 270,000 jobs associated with the sector, the largest share of employment in the national economy [31]. The sector is an intrinsic component of the domestic economy as it has a direct presence in each locality and community. In this regard, the sector is crucial bringing balance to economic recovery. Retailing also supports indirect enterprise and employment opportunities associated with areas such as logistics and distribution.

Section 6.1 has outlined key economic, population and demographic trends within Fingal, many of which have direct implications for retailing policy in the Development Plan. The County’s population increased significantly between 2006 and 2011 by 14.2%, a growth rate notably higher than the national average and the other Dublin planning authorities, and a trend expected to continue. Additionally, in 2011 Fingal was recorded as having the youngest population in the country, a higher than average proportion of children in the 0-14 years age group, and a lower than average proportion of single person households. Coupled with these population and demographic trends, are key economic trends that have implications for retailing policy. Following a number of years of contraction in domestic demand that significantly dampened retail activity and spending, recent forecasts indicate recovering employment rates and increases in consumer disposable income levels.

With regard to retailing trends, national analysis [32] identified that there was substantial expansion of the grocery retail sector between 2001 and 2011; a nationally imposed cap on the permitted floorspace of grocery stores did not appear to be a constraint in the sector; the market for convenience goods was dominated by a small number of companies (Tescos, Dunnes Stores, and Supervalu); a new component in the retail market, represented by Lidl and Aldi was identified; and online shopping had become an established feature of the retail market with various retailers availing of online services to reach a larger consumer market.



Objective ED34

Support and promote the sustainable development of the retailing sector throughout the County, with a particular recognition of the importance of SMEs to this domestic sector of the local economy.

Retail Planning Policy Context

The retail planning policy context for the Draft Development Plan is informed by retail guidance documents at the national and regional levels. Respectively, these include Guidelines for Planning Authorities: Retail Planning issued in 2012 by the DoECLG; and the Retail Strategy for the Greater Dublin Area, 2008-2016 published in 2008 on behalf of the Dublin and Mid East Regional Authorities. Additionally, Fingal’s Retail Hierarchy is required to accord with the settlement hierarchy identified for the County in the Regional Planning Guidelines for the Greater Dublin Area 2010-2022 (RPGs) issued in 2010 by the Dublin and Mid East Regional Authorities.

National Retail Planning Policy Context

The Retail Planning Guidelines have five overriding policy objectives that planning authorities are to follow and implement so that planning can support the retail sector, whilst also ensuring the delivery of sustainable retail developments and the vitality and vibrancy of the County’s urban centres. These objectives include:

  • Ensuring retail development is plan-led;
  • Use of the sequential approach to retail development to promote town centre vitality;
  • Securing competitiveness in the retailing sector through quality designed and suitably located projects;
  • Increasing access to retailing opportunities through more sustainable forms of transport than the private car; and
  • Delivering quality urban design outcomes.

The Retail Planning Guidelines are accompanied by a Retail Design Manual, which places a very strong emphasis on the quality of building design and on the contribution that strong and positive retailing experiences can make to the public realm in towns and villages. The application of the practical measures advocated in the Manual can ensure that Fingal’s urban centres are appealing places in which to shop, visit and spend time.

Retail Strategy for the GDA

The Retail Strategy for the GDA came into effect in 2008, and is due to expire in 2016. As such, from the outset, it is highlighted that the Strategy, which was based on economic conditions prior to the recession, is coming to the end of its lifetime. The Retail Planning Guidelines require that a multi-authority Retail Strategy be prepared for planning authorities within the GDA. Due to this requirement and the pending expiration of the current Strategy, it is anticipated that a Retail Strategy for the recently formed EMRA will be required within the lifetime of the Development Plan. In the absence of an updated Retail Strategy, the current Strategy remains applicable for the preparation of the Draft Development Plan.

The Retail Strategy for the GDA provides projected floorspace requirements for convenience and comparison retailing in Fingal up to 2016 and defines the retail hierarchy within the County, with locations identified and recommendations made on the appropriate type and scale of retail provision at these various locations. The retail hierarchy for the County as defined in the Retail Strategy forms the basis of the Fingal Retail Hierarchy, which is presented below in Table 6.1.

Fingal Retail Hierarchy

The Fingal Retail Hierarchy has been devised having regard to the classifications of the Retail Strategy for the GDA and through ensuring consistency with the settlement hierarchy of the RPGs for the GDA. The Fingal Retail Hierarchy includes a categorisation of urban centres within the County into retailing levels, identifies the locations of each level, and the type of retail format that is considered appropriate for each level of the hierarchy. In devising the Fingal Retail Hierarchy, it is considered appropriate that the towns of Donabate, Lusk and Rush be elevated from the level classification in the Retail Strategy to the next level due to these towns being identified as higher performing urban centres in the RPGs. That being, in the Retail Hierarchy Donabate, Lusk and Rush are classified as Level 4: Small Towns in the Retail Strategy, but are designated as being Moderate Growth Towns in the RPGs.



Objective ED35

Ensure that policies in relation to type, quantum and locations of retail floorspace provision are consistent with the requirements and recommendations of the relevant regional policy frameworks and national planning guidelines.

Table 6.1: Fingal Retail Hierarchy







Retailing Level

Urban

Centre

Location

Zoning

Objective

Types of Services

Appropriate Retail

Format

Level 2*:

Major Town

Centres

* Level 1 is Dublin City Centre

Swords

Blanchardstown

Major Town

Centre ‘MC’

Level 2 Centres should offer a full range of all types of retail services from newsagents to specialist shops and boutiques; large department stores, convenience stores of all types, shopping centres and high level of mixed uses including the arts and culture to create a vibrant, living place. Level 2 Centres should be well connected and served by high quality public transport, with population catchments in excess of 60,000 people.

High Order

Comparison

Middle Order Comparison

Lower Order Comparison

Superstore

Supermarket

Level 3:

Town

Centres

Balbriggan

Malahide

Skerries

Charlestown

Donabate

Lusk

Rush

Major Town

Centre ‘MC’

Town

Centre ‘TC’

Level 3 Centres will vary in terms of scale of provision and the size of catchment based on their proximity to a Level 2 Centre. Generally where the centre has a large catchment (such as Balbriggan) and is not close to a major town centre, there should be a good range of comparison shopping (though no large department store), with a mix of uses and services, some leisure activities and a range of cafes and restaurants. At least one supermarket and a smaller scale department store may be required to meet local needs. Where the Level 3 Centre is close to an existing major town centre, the scale of retail and mixed use provision should be lower, with the proposed range of shops meeting more basic day to day needs, with only small scale range of comparison units trading. Level 3 Centres should generally cater for a population of between 10,000 and 40,000 people.

Middle Order Comparison

Lower Order Comparison

Superstore

Supermarket

Level 4:

Small Towns and Village Centres; and Local Centres

Blanchardstown Village, Mulhuddart, Clonsilla, Castleknock, Howth, Portmarnock, Baldoyle, Ongar, Sutton, Balrothery

Applewood, Stapolin, Racecourse, Santry Demesne, Bayside, Castlemills, Carrickhill, Tyrellstown, Roselawn and Rathbeale

Town

Centre ‘TC’

Local

Centre ‘LC’

Level 4 Centres should generally provide for one supermarket ranging in size from 1,000-2,500 sq m with a limited range of supporting shops (low order comparison), supporting services, community facilities or health clinics grouped together to create a focus for the local population. This level of centre should meet the everyday needs of the local population and surrounding catchment.

Lower Order Comparison

(limited to a small number of shops meeting local needs)

Supermarket

Level 5:

Local Shops and

Small Villages

Kinsaley Village, Kinsaley/ Feltrim Brackenstown, Holywell, Rivervalley, Seabury, Castlelands, Mountview, Hartstown, Huntstown, Carpenterstown, Boroimhe, Ridgewood, Laurel Lodge, Corduff and Loughshinny

Balscadden, Naul, Garristown, Oldtown, Ballyboghil, Rowlestown, Coolquay and Rivermeade

Local

Centre ‘LC’

Rural

Village ‘RV’

Level 5 Centres should meet the basic day to day needs of surrounding residents, whether as a rural foci points close to other community facilities such as the local primary schools, post office and GAA club or as a terrace of shops within a suburb. Expected are a maximum of one or two small convenience stores, newsagents, and potentially other supporting services.

Local shops

Additional Retail Floorspace

As outlined above, the Retail Strategy allocated future floorspace totals for each of the seven planning authorities located in the GDA, including Fingal, for convenience [33] and comparison [34] retailing up until 2016. The total allocations are for gross lettable floorspace need [35] in convenience and comparison retailing and include, respectively, a 20% and 25% upward adjustment to facilitate future demand, in effect, to take cognisance of the fact that large retail developments, once granted permission, can often take a number of years to be constructed and be fully operational. The projected floorspace requirements for Fingal and the GDA total, to provide an indication of the regional context, are in Table 6.2:

Table 6.2: Extracts from Table 5.10 of the Retail Strategy for the Greater Dublin Area, 2008





Council/

Area

Convenience

Gross lettable floorspace need (sq m)

Inclusive of 20% upward adjustment

Comparison

Gross lettable floorspace need (sq m)

Inclusive of a 25% upward

adjustment [36]

Fingal

58,115 sq m

110,181 sq m – 150,248 sq m

GDA Total

248,744 sq m

756,145 sq m – 1,031,109 sq m

The Fingal Planning Department has undertaken analysis of planning applications and retailing trends within the County over the last several years, and completed on-the-ground-surveys of various urban and rural centres throughout the County with differing retail offer and function. Analysis of these investigations and reviews has concluded that retail provision in Fingal remains within the future allocation given to the County by the Retail Strategy for both convenience and comparison floorspace up to 2016.

As outlined above in the Retail Planning Policy Context, the Retail Planning Guidelines require the planning authorities within the GDA to prepare a multi-authority retail strategy. It is anticipated that a retail strategy for the EMRA will be required within the lifetime of the Development Plan. Due to this Ministerial requirement and mindful of the regional considerations involved in retail planning, it is considered appropriate that any quantitative indications of additional retail floorspace for Fingal over the coming Plan period be guided and determined by a new retail strategy for the EMRA.

Assessment of Retail Development Proposals

The overriding policy approach for retail planning in the Development Plan is that new significant retail development should be directed primarily into the major town centres and town centres in the County (Level 2 and Level 3) and be in accordance with the scale, type and retail formats included in the Fingal Retail Hierarchy above. New retail development for small towns, village centres, local centres and small villages (Level 4 and Level 5) should similarly be in accordance with the Fingal Retail Hierarchy, with a strong emphasis on being of an appropriate scale and offer to sufficiently meet local retailing needs.

For the Level 2 and Level 3 urban centres, new retail development should be located within the core retail areas identified for these centres. Proposals for new retail development outside of the defined core retail areas will only be considered in exceptional circumstances where the planning authority is satisfied that there are no sites or potential sites available either within the core retail area or on-the-edge of the core, and that the proposed retail development is necessary to serve the needs of the area. The core retail areas for the Level 2 and Level 3 urban centres are indicated in Figures 6.1 to 6.9, which are found at the end of this Section.

Chapter 4 of the Retail Planning Guidelines outlines in detail the required approach to be followed by planning authorities in the assessment of retail developments through the development management process. Referred to as the sequential approach, the approach involves an assessment of retail proposals to ensure that the proposed locations are most suitable and best available for the type of retailing proposed.

Underlying the approach is the achievement of the Guidelines’ key objectives, referred to above, in particular ensuring the vitality and vibrancy of the existing urban centres. The Guidelines state that development proposals not according with the fundamental objective to support the vitality and viability of town centres must demonstrate compliance with the sequential approach before they can be approved [37].

An important element of supporting the quality, ambience, vibrancy and vitality of urban and village centres is promotion of an appropriate mix of day and night-time uses, including commercial, recreational, civic, cultural, leisure and residential uses. In this regard the provision of residential uses in town and village centres is encouraged, where a proposed development makes a positive contribution to the area in terms of adding to the richness and diversity of uses.



Objective ED36

Require that new significant retail development be primarily directed to the higher Levels in the Fingal Retail Hierarchy and specifically to the core retail areas identified for these centres. Only in exceptional circumstances (where the planning authority is satisfied that there are no sites or potential sites available either within the core retail area or on-the-edge of the core, and that the proposed retail development is necessary to serve the needs of the area) will proposed retail developments that are located outside of these centres and/ or the core retail areas of these centres be positively considered.



Objective ED37

Ensure that applications for new retail development are consistent with the retail policies of the Development Plan, in particular with the Fingal Retail Hierarchy, and are assessed in accordance with the requirements of the Guidelines for Planning Authorities: Retail Planning, including, where appropriate, the application of the Sequential Approach, and requirements for retail impact assessments and transport impact assessments for retail developments which due to their scale and/ or location may impact on the vitality and viability of major town, town, local and village centres, while having regard to the impact such directions/developments may have on the existing businesses operating within the area.

Retail Policy and Core Retail Areas

Major Town Centres

At Level 2, the top tier of the Fingal Retail Hierarchy and corresponding with the County’s Settlement Hierarchy, are Swords and Blanchardstown. These are urban centres of regional importance in terms of their retailing function and the extent of their retail provision in convenience, comparison and retail park and warehouse floorspace. The Council’s policy in relation to these Major Town Centres is to proactively improve, strengthen, consolidate and enhance their primary retailing functions in addition to the leisure, community and civic functions they offer.



Objective ED38

Develop and promote Swords and Blanchardstown as sustainable, vibrant and prosperous Major Town Centres operating at the highest retail Level within the Fingal Retail Hierarchy, and to further strengthen, improve and diversify the retailing performance of Swords and Blanchardstown within a regional context.



Objective ED39

Facilitate improvements to the quantum and quality of retail offer and function in Swords and Blanchardstown, and ensure their sustainable development by consolidating, intensifying and enhancing their existing core retail areas, and by directing new retail opportunities into the core retail areas identified for each.

Town Centres

Level 3 of the Fingal Retail Hierarchy includes key urban centres well distributed geographically throughout the County, with significant resident-populations and also serving wider catchment areas, some into rural areas. This retail tier includes Balbriggan, Malahide, Skerries, Charlestown, Donabate, Lusk and Rush. While these towns are unique with distinctive characters and historic development, they perform and have further potential to perform over the Draft Plan period to a higher retailing level due to the strength of their resident-population and catchment-population. These Town Centre locations have at least one convenience store, a range of middle order comparison retailers and a range of supporting retail services. The Council’s policy in relation to these Town Centres is to consolidate and enhance their retailing functions balanced with the wider range of leisure, community and civic functions they offer.



Objective ED40

Ensure the development of Balbriggan, Malahide, Skerries, Charlestown, Donabate, Lusk and Rush as sustainable, vibrant and prosperous Town Centres performing at a high retail level within the Fingal Retail Hierarchy to meet the retailing needs of and offer sufficient retail choice to their local populations and catchment populations.



Objective ED41

Facilitate appropriately scaled improvements to the quantum and quality of retail offer and function in Balbriggan, Malahide, Skerries, Charlestown, Donabate, Lusk and Rush, and ensure their sustainable development by consolidating, intensifying and enhancing their existing core retail areas, and by directing new retail opportunities into the core retail areas identified for each.



Objective ED42

Ensure that the Level 3 Town Centres have a retail offer that is sufficient in terms of scale, type, and range without adversely impacting on or diverting trade from the higher order retailing locations.

Small Towns and Village Centres and Local Centres

Level 4 of the Fingal Retail Hierarchy includes a number of important small towns, urban village centres, and local centres. These are dispersed through the County including urban centres such as Blanchardstown Village, Mulhuddart, Clonsilla, Castleknock, and Ongar in the west of the County, Balrothery to the north, and Howth, Portmarnock, Baldoyle, and Sutton to the east (a complete list of Level 4 Centres is included in the Fingal Retail Hierarchy in Table 6.1).

In similarity with the Level 3 Centres, while the Level 4 Centres are distinctive in character, in retailing terms they perform a similar and essential function serving smaller but established resident-populations and catchment-populations. It is considered appropriate for Level 4 centres to typically have one supermarket with a limited range of supporting comparison units and retail services to meet the everyday needs of the local population and surrounding catchment. The Council’s policy in relation to Level 4 Centres is to enhance their retailing functions in balance with the role they play in meeting the needs of the local population and smaller catchment population.



Objective ED43

Ensure the development of Level 4 Centres as sustainable, vibrant and prosperous Small Towns, Village Centres and Local Centres performing at a level within the Fingal Retail Hierarchy to meet the retailing needs of immediate local populations and catchment populations.



Objective ED44

Where a gap in the retail provision of a Level 4 Centre is identified and established, facilitate appropriately scaled improvements to the retail offer and function in Level 4 Centres and ensure their sustainable development by enhancing the existing Centre for each and directing new retail opportunities into the Centres.



Objective ED45

Ensure that the Level 4 Small Towns, Village Centres and Local Centres have a retail offer that is sufficient in terms of scale, type, and range without adversely impacting on or diverting trade from the higher order retailing locations.

Local Shops and Small Villages

Level 5 of the Fingal Retail Hierarchy includes a range of lower-performing local centres and small groupings of local shops in urban areas, and the rural villages. In similarity with Level 4 Centres, the Level 5 Centres are by their nature widely represented through the County, and include the Rural Villages of Balscadden, Naul, Garristown, Oldtown, Ballyboghil, Rowlestown, Coolquay, and Rivermeade (a complete list of Level 5 Centres is included in the Fingal Retail Hierarchy in Table 6.1).

In retailing terms, Level 5 Centres are intended to meet the basic day to day needs of the local population whether as a rural foci points close to other community facilities such as the local primary schools, post office and GAA club or as a terrace of shops within a suburb. It is considered appropriate for Level 5 Centres to have a maximum of one or two small convenience stores, newsagents, and potentially other supporting services. The Council’s policy in relation to Level 5 Centres is to maintain their lower tier retailing functions so as to meet the needs of the local population and smaller catchment population.



Objective ED46

Ensure the development of Level 5 Centres as sustainable, vibrant and prosperous Local Shops and Small Villages performing at a level within the Fingal Retail Hierarchy to meet the retailing needs of immediate local populations and catchment populations.



Objective ED47

Where a gap in the retail provision of a Level 5 Centre is identified and established, facilitate appropriately scaled improvements to the retail offer and function of Level 5 Centres and ensure their sustainable development by enhancing the existing Centre for each and directing new retail opportunities into the Centres.



Objective ED48

Ensure that the Level 5 Local Shops and Small Villages have a retail offer that is sufficient in terms of scale, type, and range without adversely impacting on or diverting trade from the higher order retailing locations.

Occurrence of Vacancy

Key objectives of the retail policy in the Draft Development Plan is to ensure that the County’s urban and rural centres perform at an appropriate level with a range of retail provision and offer reflective of their classification in the Fingal Retail Hierarchy, and that the vitality and viability of retailing in these centres is protected and enhanced as opportunities arise.

Vacancy in the main streets, shopping centres, and local centres of the County’s towns and villages has been a particular challenge over recent years associated with the economic downturn and significant decreases in disposable incomes. In survey work undertaken by the Fingal Planning Department in 2015, Balbriggan was identified as having particularly high rates of vacancy in its core retail area and as being especially vulnerable to the negative effects associated with vacancy such as loss of retail offer, degradation of building stock, and resultant injury to the public realm experience. The Council’s policy in relation to vacancy in the County’s centres is to use all available measures to tackle the problem and support measures and actions identified in action frameworks such as the Local Authority Retail Support: Improving our Cities and Towns, June 2015.



Objective ED49

Maintain and strengthen the vitality, viability and regeneration of the County’s Major Town, Town, Local and Village Centres by providing for civic, leisure, cultural and tourism attractions while ensuring that retailing remains a core function of these centres.



Objective ED50

Support the measures and actions identified in the Local Authority Retail Support: Improving our Cities and Towns, June 2015 to address the negative issues associated with vacancy and to ensure that the potential benefits associated with retailing activities is captured for the County’s urban and rural centres.

Non-Retail Uses, Fast Food Outlets, Takeaways, Off Licences and Betting Offices

Associated with protecting and enhancing the vitality and viability of the County’s urban and rural centres, is addressing the occurrence of non-retail uses (such as amusement centres and arcades), fast food outlets, off licences and betting offices. An over-supply or dominance of these types of uses within the main streets, shopping centres and local centres of Fingal’s centres can have negative impacts on the amenities of these centres and their ability to perform their retailing functions in accordance with their classification in the Fingal Retail Hierarchy.



Objective ED51

Control the provision of non-retail uses, especially at ground floor level, in the main streets of towns and villages, shopping centres and local centres to ensure that injury is not caused to the amenities of these streets and centres through the loss of retail opportunities.



Objective ED52

Prevent an over-supply or dominance of fast food outlets, takeaways, off licences, and betting offices in the main streets of towns and villages, shopping centres and local centres to ensure that injury is not caused to the amenities of these streets and centres through the loss of retail opportunities.

Retail Warehousing and Retail Parks

Fingal is well served by retail warehousing and retail parks [38], principally located in the Swords, Blanchardstown, Balbriggan and Ballymun areas. Survey work undertaken by the Fingal Planning Department in 2015 identified very low levels of vacancy in these locations, particularly in Airside Retail Park and Blanchardstown Retail Park, reflecting the health of this component of the retailing sector in Fingal. Further details on the Retail Warehousing ‘RW’ land use zoning are outlined in Section 6.13 below in relation to locations of these zonings in the Draft Development Plan.

The Retail Planning Guidelines highlight that there has been a high level of retail warehouses provided in recent years and recommend that planning authorities should carefully consider the requirement for retail warehousing additional floorspace. In the absence of an up-to-date retail strategy for the EMRA, it is considered appropriate that the existing Retail Warehousing zonings remain and that a cautionary approach is taken in assessing proposals for new retail warehousing and/ or retail parks, and that a retail impact assessment should accompany any such proposal.



Objective ED53

Direct demand for new retail warehousing and/ or retail parks into the Major Town Centre ‘MC’ zoned lands of the Level 2 higher order retailing locations and into the Retail Warehousing ‘RW’ zoning, preferably, in the first instance, to consolidate the existing clusters of retail warehouses and/ or retail parks.



Objective ED54

Ensure that applications for new retail warehousing and/ or retail parks are consistent with the requirements of the Guidelines for Planning Authorities: Retail Planning, including, where appropriate, the application of the Sequential Approach, and requirements for retail impact assessments and transport impact assessments for retail developments which due to their scale and/ or location may impact on the vitality and viability of existing retail parks.

Figure 6.1 Swords Core Retail Area

Map - Swords Core Retail Area

Figure 6.2 Blanchardstown Core Retail Area

Map - Blanchardstown Core Retail Area

Figure 6.3 Balbriggan Core Retail Area

Map - Balbriggan Core Retail Area

Figure 6.4 Malahide Core Retail Area

Map -  Malahide Core Retail Area

Figure 6.5 Skerries Core Retail Area

Map - Skerries Core Retail Area

Figure 6.6 Charlestown Core Retail Area

Map - Charlestown Core Retail Area

Figure 6.7 Donabate Core Retail Area

Map - Donabate Core Retail Area

Figure 6.8 Lusk Core Retail Area

Map - Lusk Core Retail Area

Figure 6.9 Rush Core Retail Area

Map - Rush Core Retail Area

6.9 Tourism Sector

Tourism has been identified as one of the country’s most important economic sectors and is credited with playing a significant role in the economic recovery in recent years [39]. Tourism is particularly important in that it can assist in providing business and employment opportunities across regions and leads to jobs across the spectrum of skills requirements. In 2015 the national policy framework for the tourism sector, People, Place and Policy: Growing Tourism to 2025, was published with a strong focus on developing the sector to attract ten million overseas visitors, create a range of direct and indirect enterprise opportunities and to grow employment in the sector to 250,000 persons by 2025.

The Grow Dublin Tourism Alliance was established in 2014, to drive a new collaborative strategy to market the Dublin region in the international marketplace. - ‘Dublin – A Breath of Fresh Air’ a new tourism marketing campaign, was launched in October 2015. This campaign was co-ordinated by the ‘Grow Dublin Tourism Alliance’ (GDTA) and encourages visitors to look beyond the City Centre, positioning Dublin as a coastal city with mountains and sea at its doorstep.

Fingal is excellently placed to contribute to the achievement of these national targets due to the location of Dublin Airport in the County, the close proximity of Fingal to Dublin City, the primary driver of the country’s tourism industry, and the wealth of Fingal’s natural, cultural and built heritage offer. The quality and diversity of Fingal’s tourism offer is particularly strong in relation to the Council-owned Heritage Properties such as Malahide Castle and Gardens, Fingal’s top visitor attraction; Council-operated events such as the Flavours of Fingal County Show in Newbridge Demesne; and Council-supported events such as the international Test Cricket Match in Malahide Castle. The Council will engage and collaborate with all relevant stakeholders to ensure the economic potential of the tourism sector is secured for the benefit of the local economy.

The Fingal Tourism Strategy 2015-2018 estimates that tourism is worth €500m annually to the local Fingal economy and supports approximately 20,000 jobs [40]. The Strategy identifies key assets, attractions, and activities that can be further developed and promoted. These include conserving Fingal’s natural heritage; promoting scientific heritage; boosting business, sports and food tourism; broadening the range of visitor experiences; and improving experiences at the Council’s heritage properties.

While policy and objectives in the Draft Development Plan can support the objectives and actions identified in the Strategy, Fingal’s rich and diverse natural, cultural and built heritage, can be vulnerable and economic development proposals that affect the County’s heritage need to be sensitively designed and undertaken.

Rural-based tourism policy and objectives in relation to, for example, walking, and farm based activities, are covered in further detail in the Chapter 5.



Objective ED55

Engage and collaborate with key stakeholders, relevant agencies, sectoral representatives and local communities to develop the tourism sector in Fingal and to ensure that the economic potential of the tourism sector is secured for the benefit of the local economy.



Objective ED56

Facilitate and contribute to the implementation of the objectives and actions identified in the Fingal Tourism Strategy 2015-2018 for the economic benefit of the County.



Objective ED57

Develop the necessary tourism infrastructure, visitor attractions and supporting facilities at appropriate locations in the County in a manner that does not have an adverse impact on the receiving areas and the receiving environment.



Objective ED58

Direct the provision of tourist related facilities, such as information offices and cultural centres, into town and village locations to support and strengthen the existing economic infrastructure of such centres.



Objective ED59

Ensure the economic benefits associated with promoting the County’s natural, cultural and built heritage are balanced with due consideration for their conservation and protection.



Objective ED60

Support events and concerts at suitable locations within Fingal subject to the appropriate licensing arrangements, in consultation with affected stakeholders such as community groups, local businesses and residents in the immediate area where feasible and practical, and to protecting and safeguarding the amenities of the area and the natural and built heritage.



Objective ED61

Promote and facilitate opportunities to create an integrated pedestrian and cycle network linking key tourist destinations in the County, by advancing the proposed Fingal Coastal Way, through carrying out a route evaluation study within two years of the adoption of this Plan, ensuring a balance is achieved between nature conservation and public use and through identifying public rights of way in consultation with all relevant stakeholders, and by exploiting former rail networks for use as potential new tourist and recreational walking routes.



Objective ED62

Promote opportunities for enterprise and employment creation in rural-based tourism where it can be demonstrated that the resultant development will not have a negative impact on the receiving rural environment.

Recreational Trails Network

Fingal’s scenic and varied landscape presents opportunities for recreational activities, particularly the development of a recreational walking trail network at strategic and local level. Fingal’s countryside, coastal and canal corridors and rich heritage make it an ideal walking destination. It can offer most types of walks including coastal /canal walks, hill/countryside walks, riverside walks and village walks. Walking is steadily becoming one of the main recreational pastimes.

A well developed and managed recreational trail network within Fingal offers a unique opportunity to showcase the beauty and heritage of the County and has the capacity to stimulate key attractions and most importantly increase awareness and understanding of our natural assets in a controlled manner. The development of a recreational trail network in Fingal is a largely untapped generator of economic and tourism development.

The Irish Trails Strategy was launched in January 2007 and aims to develop a world class recreational trail system in Ireland for all Irish citizens and visitors to the country to enjoy. The strategy highlights the many benefits from a health, recreation, tourism and economic perspective that are generated through trail usage and sets out a number of goals and tasks to be advanced over a ten year period. This strategy has led to the establishment of a National Trails Advisory Committee (NTAC) and the setting up of a National Trails Office within the Irish Sports Council. The NTO have published a number of publications regarding trail development in Ireland. Although the National Trails Office has classified a range of trail types, including walking, cycling, canoeing and horse riding trails, it is the walking trail that has progressed significantly throughout the country in recent years.

Fingal County Council trail projects include the Royal Canal Greenway and the Swords and Rush Heritage Trails. A long standing objective of the Fingal Development Plan is the development of the ‘Fingal Coastal Way’ a strategic greenway for pedestrians and cyclists along the coastal corridor from Howth to Balbriggan. It is noted that much of the coastal walk is already in place and it is possible for people to walk from Clontarf, around the Hill of Howth and on to Baldoyle [via Beach], Portmarnock, Malahide, Swords and Donabate. These walks, including the four Looped Walks and trail paths around Howth Head will form part of the overall ‘Fingal Coastal Way’. An audit of these existing trails including ‘rights of way’ will form part of the planning and development of the strategic greenway of the ‘Fingal Coastal Way’. Fingal County Council is currently moving ahead with the planning and environmental assessments required for the most critical link of the coastal way across the Malahide viaduct linking Malahide Demesne to Newbridge Demesne. Various community groups in the villages and towns of north Fingal are also actively developing walking trails in conjunction with Fingal County Council. The Fingal Walking Club organises and participates in regular walks along Fingal’s coastal tracks, river valleys, towns and villages and the open countryside.

Fingal County Council recognises the development of recreational trails and associated services requires coordination and cooperation with and between stakeholders and landowners. The long-term success of this trail network and its development is dependent on a fully integrated approach.

In order to promote the development of a recreational trails network within the County, a Recreational Trails Plan shall be prepared by Fingal County Council in conjunction with relevant stakeholders, landowners and various interest groups within the lifetime of this plan. This plan will set out the framework for future recreational trails development in the County. A Recreational Trails Committee with Fingal County Council as the lead agency is proposed to plan, develop, implement and market the recreational trail network within the county. This committee shall actively source funding to implement the strategic trail network. Funding sources can come from a variety of agencies including Fingal Leader Partnership, Failte Ireland, The Heritage Council, Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport, the National Lottery and the Local Authority.

The development of the recreational trails network within the County is proposed at three levels; i) the strategic level [eg.Fingal Coastal Way, the Liffey Valley area, and the Royal Canal Greenway], ii) town trails including Slí na Sláinte and iii) village trails. The success of these trails depends on a coordinated strategic framework set out in the Recreational Trails Plan.

The Recreational Trails Plan shall build on the body of work currently being prepared by Fingal County Council in the development of recreational trails and associated standardised signage for such trails. Given the sensitivities of the coastal corridor and inland areas, location and design of trails will have to be carefully considered. Through careful siting, design, detailing and managed access, trails have the potential to relieve pressures from the sensitive biodiversity/ecological sites throughout the county. The Recreational Trails Plan will allow for the assessment of the wider environmental impacts of a countywide recreational trail network.



Objective ED63

Establish a Recreational Trails Committee within Fingal County Council to plan, develop and implement a recreational trail network throughout the County in association with relevant stakeholders, landowners and various community interest groups within the County.



Objective ED64

Develop a Recreational Trails Plan for the County in conjunction with relevant stakeholders, landowners and various community interest groups within the lifetime of this plan. This plan shall set out a coordinated strategic framework for future recreational trail development in the County.



Objective ED65

Promote and facilitate the development of the Fingal Coastal Way from north of Balbriggan to Howth taking full account of the need to protect the natural and cultural heritage of the coast and the need to avoid significant adverse impacts on European sites and species protected by law and ensure the integration of the Fingal Coastal Way with other strategic trails within Dublin City and adjoining counties. Prioritise the section between Baldoyle and Portmarnock where the current road design is particularly hostile to pedestrians and cyclists.



Objective ED66

Promote and facilitate the development of the Royal Canal Greenway taking full account of the need to protect the natural and cultural heritage of the canal route and the need to avoid significant adverse impacts on European site(s) and species protected by law and ensure the integration of the Royal Canal Greenway with other strategic trails in Fingal and in adjoining local authorities.



Objective ED67

Support walking groups and local communities to develop walking trails in towns and villages both for the enjoyment of local people and as an attractor for visitors to the area, promoting local economic development.

Integrated Tourism Complexes

The Council will encourage the development of integrated tourism/leisure/recreational complexes in demesne type landscapes where such uses are consistent with the retention of such landscapes. The conservation of these assets into the future is essential and the Council recognises the need for the appropriate sustainable reuse of the buildings.

An integrated tourism/leisure/recreational complex should include a number of the following:

  • Hotel and associated facilities, conference centre, golf course, equestrian centre, trekking centre, fitness centre, indoor/outdoor water facility, fishing facility, museums, nature trails, walking routes and associated facilities.
  • It may also include tourist related residential and leisure retail which is ancillary to the main tourist attraction. The tourist related residential development shall be contained within the existing buildings and retained in single company ownership and shall not be sold off individually.

An overall planning application will be required for the entire complex which will include proposals, where appropriate, for:

  • The preservation/conservation of natural amenities on the site,
  • The preservation/conservation of the heritage structures on the site,
  • The retention of the open nature of the lands
  • Significant and intensive landscaping of the site

Abbeyville

An integrated tourism and recreational complex is encouraged on Abbeyville Demesne. This shall incorporate facilities which may include: Hotel / Conference Centre, Golf Course, Fitness Centre and at least one other extensive tourist/recreational facility. A strictly limited number of dwelling units, preferably grouped in a courtyard type configuration, which shall be reserved for tourism use. The nature and extent of the facilities to be provided shall be determined primarily by the need to conserve the house and its surroundings, which are of major architectural importance, and the special landscape character and heritage features of the demesne.

Dunsoghly Castle

Consideration will be given to tourism related development at Dunsoghly Castle, in consultation with the appropriate government agencies, which has due consideration to the special significance of the site and where such development does not contain any residential element.

Roganstown

It is proposed to facilitate the existing integrated tourism and recreational complex at Roganstown. The nature and extent of the facilities provided is confined by the primary use of the site for recreation and tourism use and the need to conserve the special landscape character and heritage features of the site.

Tyrrelstown House

A hotel and/or leisure development is encouraged at Tyrrelstown House. Any development should protect the woodland and setting of this Protected Structure and include a Tree Preservation Order and/or a management agreement in relation to sensitive trees at Tyrrelstown.



Objective ED68

Facilitate, where appropriate, the conversion of former demesnes and estates and their outbuildings into integrated tourist, leisure and recreational complex type developments subject to architectural conservation best practice and proper planning and sustainable development.

6.10 Agri-Food Sector

The agri-food sector has been credited with playing an integral role in the national economic recovery in recent years. The sector is the country’s largest indigenous industry, with an estimated turnover of €26 billion and providing 170,000 jobs or 9% of the total employment figure [41]. The sector makes a significant contribution to employment in rural areas, being a pivotal source of enterprise creation and opportunities. The sector has particularly appealing characteristics in that its supply chain is labour intensive in the local economy while its output is primarily for export. This means that it is rich in employment locally but can harness growth opportunities globally.

Reflective of the growing importance and economic potential of the sector, a strong policy emphasis has been placed on the sector in recent years through a number of national frameworks issued by the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine including Food Harvest 2020: A Vision for Irish agri-food and fisheries, Milestones for Success 2014, which charts the achievements of the former, and most recently Food Wise 2025: A 10-year Vision for the Irish agri-food industry. Food Wise 2025 sets out a strategic plan for the coming decade, covering the period of the Draft Plan, and focusses on opportunities to increase primary production, exports, add value to the products within the sector, and create 23,000 additional jobs throughout the sector. The sector is broadly described as encompassing everything from primary agriculture to food and beverage production, from fisheries and fish processing to forestry and forestry outputs [42]. Of the unique nature of the sector, Food Wise comments: ‘Its strategic importance to the Irish economy, its roots in local communities and its strengthening global reach (the industry provides quality, safe and nutritious food to consumers in at least 175 countries around the world) make it a sector unlike any other’ [43].

Fingal is the principal county within the Dublin region for agricultural activities, and has a national reputation for its horticultural sector. The agricultural profile of the County is characterised by mainly tillage and beef production operators, with a number of horticultural farms engaged in specialist fruit and vegetable production. In 2009, Dublin was identified as the most important County in a national context (with Fingal being the main producer of the four Dublin local authorities) for field vegetable production, with 2,157 ha in field vegetables representing 47% of the national production [44]. Dublin’s importance in the production of soft fruit and protected vegetables (including tomatoes, lettuce, cucumbers, peppers and other vegetables grown under glass and polythene protected structures) is also evident, when in 2012, Dublin accounted for 25% of all soft fruit production and 69% of all protected vegetable production in the country [45].

Of importance in considering the building requirements of the sector, Dublin was also identified as having the highest area of glasshouses in the country, with 72 hectares of glasshouses (73% of total glasshouse area); the highest area of polythene tunnels, with 50 hectares of polythene (37% of total polythene area) [46] and the highest storage capacity including for pack houses and cold storage units.

Fingal is home to some of the country’s most successful horticultural based businesses and clusters of activity. These include Keelings at Roslin, north of Dublin Airport, Country Crest at Lusk and Dennigan’s at Oldtown. Keelings is Ireland’s largest horticultural business, and its base is the focus of a large, integrated sustainable food-centric business and logistics hub for the domestic and export markets. Country Crest is an agri-food business which is one of the biggest growers and suppliers of potatoes and onions to Ireland’s key multiples. Dennigan’s is the largest suppliers of potatoes in the country and has developed a significant distribution and logistics business. Having regard to the horticultural profile of the County outlined above, Fingal is excellently placed to meet the targets included in Food Wise 2025, for the benefit of the national economy but also for significant benefit of Fingal’s local economy.



Objective ED69

Engage and collaborate with key stakeholders, relevant agencies, sectoral representatives and local communities to develop the agri-food sector in Fingal, to promote and showcase the agri-food sector, including supporting events such as the Flavours of Fingal, and to ensure that the economic potential of the sector is secured for the benefit of the local economy, and national economy.



Objective ED70

Ensure the economic benefits associated with promoting the County’s agri-food sector are balanced with due consideration for the conservation and protection of the rural environment.



Objective ED71

Promote the growth of the agri-food sector in Fingal by responding to the varying needs and requirements of the different components within the sector and by creating high quality built environments offering a range of building sizes and formats, supported by the targeted provision of necessary infrastructure.



Objective ED72

Encourage and provide opportunities specifically linked to food, horticulture, agriculture and the development of value added opportunities in these areas.

Section 6.11 below outlines policy and objectives relevant to the Marine economic sector, including fisheries. Chapter 5 Rural Fingal contains more detailed information, policies and objectives on the other elements of the rural economy such as agriculture and farming, rural based tourism, rural economic diversification, and enterprise in rural villages.



Objective ED73

Develop a strategy for young persons healthy eating in concert with local growers in North County Dublin highlighting cost effective and convenient healthy eating recipes and habits for young people in order to connect young people with the local growing industry and to promote healthy and active living.

6.11 Marine Sector

The marine sector is identified as an important aspect of the national economy, and one with growth potential. The country has some of the largest and most valuable fisheries in Europe, is an ideal location for shellfish and seaweed aquaculture, and offers spectacular tourism and leisure opportunities and a rich maritime culture and heritage [47].

The marine sector of Fingal’s local economy is diverse, and comprises activities related to traditional fishing and food production, such as fish and fish products processing and preserving, and fish, crustaceans and molluscs retailing and wholesale distribution. The sector also includes activities associated with the building, repair and maintenance of fishing craft and marine equipment, water transport services, and water-based recreational and educational services.

In 2013, Bord Iascaigh Mhara (BIM) recorded a range of enterprises in the marine sector principally in coastal towns: for example, Howth and Balbriggan both performed strongly in fishing, processing, retailing and recreation activities, while Skerries had retailing and processing enterprises, Malahide had marine/ craft manufacturing and sea transport businesses, and Donabate had a marine/ craft manufacturing business. There were also some in-land marine enterprises including wholesale distribution, identified in Swords, Lusk, Rathbeale and Garristown [48]. Rockabill Seafood Ltd. in Balbriggan is a well-established and leading fish processing plant supplying the domestic and international markets.

In addition to marine enterprises, the infrastructure such as marinas, fishing ports and harbour facilities are important economic assets to the County. While the economic strategy for the marine sector is to encourage enterprise creation and employment growth, as coastal locations are among the most sensitive in Fingal, proposals for economic development will need to be balanced against environmental considerations. For example, where there is increasing demand for marinas and jetties to meet recreational requirements, their use will need to be carefully managed to prevent conflict between recreational activities and the primary function of the County’s harbours.



Objective ED74

Support the existing diverse nature of the marine sector in Fingal, and identify and promote sustainable growth opportunities, while protecting European sites. This shall be achieved through engagement and partnership with the relevant agencies, sectoral representatives and local communities.



Objective ED75

Develop a strategy for the future development of harbours in Fingal to service the seafood industry with key stakeholders and all interested parties. The Strategy will be subject to Screening for Appropriate Assessment and SEA.



Objective ED76

Ensure that proposals for economic development associated with the marine sector are cognisant of the sensitivities of many of Fingal’s coastal locations and that relevant environmental issues are appropriately considered.



Objective ED77

Promote opportunities for enterprise and employment creation in marine tourism where it can be demonstrated that the resultant development will not have a negative impact on the receiving marine environment.



Objective ED78

Undertake a feasibility study of the Fingal coastline to identify potential sites to accommodate marina development relevant to recreational pursuits and requirements. As part of the study the impact on the receiving marine environment, including the coastline, will be assessed and Screening for Appropriate Assessment undertaken.

6.12 Location of Employment

Overview

The selection of appropriate locations for employment uses within Fingal is determined by the principles of proper planning and sustainable development, which is a core component of the economic strategy for the County. The Plan’s policy and objectives associated with sustainable economic development are outlined above in Section 6.2 and include appropriately locating intensive employment uses adjacent to public transport networks, and where appropriate, residential developments, encouraging existing economic clusters and developing new clustering opportunities, and regenerating inefficiently performing business and industrial parks, land, and buildings.

The locations for employment development are also informed by the requirements of the Regional Planning Guidelines for the Greater Dublin Area 2010-2022 (RPGs), which provides the Settlement Hierarchy for the County.

Settlement Hierarchy

The Settlement Hierarchy for the County and the specific requirements of the RPGs for Fingal are presented in Chapter 2 of the Plan. The RPGs identify a Metropolitan Area and a Hinterland Area within Fingal, and define specific policies relevant for each Area.



Objective ED79

Ensure there are sufficient quantums and appropriate types of lands zoned for commercial, enterprise and/ or industrial uses in urban and rural located centres in accordance with the Settlement Hierarchy.

Metropolitan Area

The Metropolitan Area comprises the majority of the southern part of the County, running from Blanchardstown in the west to Howth in the east. The Area includes key urban centres in Fingal of Swords, Blanchardstown and Donabate, and the settlements adjacent to the administrative boundary with Dublin City that are within the influence of the Dublin Gateway designation of the RPGs. Dublin Airport is also located within the Area.

Swords and Blanchardstown are identified as Metropolitan Consolidation Towns. These towns currently include some of the largest employers in Fingal and are the strategic focus of a range of services such as retailing, healthcare, administration and higher education.

Reflective of the current performance of these two high-functioning employment location centres, there are a number of existing business and industrial parks in both the Swords and Blanchardstown areas. In Swords, these include Airside and Swords Enterprise Centres, North Dublin Corporate, Swords and Seatown Business Parks, and Balheary, Feltrim and Swords Industrial Parks. The wider Blanchardstown 15 area performs particularly strongly with existing clusters of employment centres across Blanchardstown, Corduff and Mulhuddart. These include Ballycoolin, Millennium, Hollywood, Rosemount, Northwest, and Westpoint Business Parks, College Business and Damastown Technology Parks, and Damastown, Coolmine and Blanchardstown Industrial Parks.

Donabate is defined as a Moderate Sustainable Growth Town, and has experienced population growth in recent years, and is served by high-capacity public transport links to Dublin city. Donabate is envisaged as performing a strong role for continuing future growth as a well-served commuter location. There are a number of existing parks in Donabate, including Redleaf, Roseville, Swords North and Turvey Business Parks.

The consolidating areas associated with the Dublin Gateway include locations such as Baldoyle, Sutton, Portmarnock, Howth and Malahide which primarily function as self-sustaining settlements where the economic activities are aimed at meeting the locally generated demand for services, with Howth and Malahide demonstrating a wider range of economic functions due to their performance as centres for tourism and marine activities. Baldoyle has two key employment centres, at Baldoyle Industrial Estate and Kilbarrack Industrial Estate, both providing significant employment for the wider area. The key employment area for commercial activity in Malahide is Broomfield Business Park.

The southern part of the County comprises locations such as Charlestown, Meakstown, Ballymun, Santry, Clonshaugh, Belcamp, and Balgriffin is a developing area, with a mix of residential communities and expanding employment locations. Its employment growth is not associated with an existing established settlement and as such there are employment parks across the Fingal and Dublin City boundary. The growth pattern is linear in extent with strong functional linkages to the M50. There are a number of existing parks in this southern part of the County including Clonshaugh Business Park, and Clonshaugh, Airways and Santry Hall Industrial Parks.

In relation to the economic strategy for the Metropolitan Area, Swords and Blanchardstown will continue to function as the primary centres for economic development and for essential supporting infrastructure provision. The economic base of Donabate will be strengthened and diversified, and as a Moderate Growth Town on a rail network will continue to grow and function as a commuter location. The Dublin Gateway Consolidation areas and the lands within the southern part of the County will follow a policy of consolidation, with their economic performance being strengthened to maximise on their competitive advantages due to geographic location, unique features and infrastructural provision.



Objective ED80

Support economic growth within the Metropolitan Area through consolidating, strengthening and promoting the strategic importance of the major urban centres of Swords and Blanchardstown and of key employment locations such as Dublin Airport and Dublin 15.



Objective ED81

Ensure that settlements and locations within the Metropolitan Area pursue development policies of consolidation, and maximise their economic strengths and competitive advantages such as tourism and marine sectoral activities in Malahide and Howth, while the lands within the southern part of the County maximise their economic potential through the strong functional linkages to the M50.

Hinterland Area

The Hinterland comprises the northern part of the County, and the majority of Fingal’s rural areas. The largest town in the Area is Balbriggan, designated as a Large Growth Town II, which functions as the primary town for service and employment delivery for an established catchment, including a wide rural area in the north of the County. There are a number of existing business and industrial parks in the Balbriggan area including Balbriggan Business Campus, Fingal Bay, KVS, and M1 Business Parks, Balbriggan and Stephenstown Industrial Parks. The Beat Enterprise and Development Centre (BEAT) is an incubator centre for new business ventures and provides a range of services to start ups and developing business.

The other main towns in the Hinterland Area are Lusk, Rush and Skerries. Each of these towns has seen substantial population growth, with rail connectivity to Dublin City an important factor in the scale of their development. Importantly, these towns have not experienced levels of sustainable employment development that would be desirable following such population expansions. The Area contains the Small Towns of Balrothery and Loughshinny and a series of rural villages.

In relation to the economic strategy for the Hinterland Area, Balbriggan will continue to function as the primary centre for economic development and for essential supporting infrastructure provision. The economic bases of Lusk and Rush will be strengthened and diversified, and as Moderate Growth Towns in proximity to a rail network will continue to grow and function as commuter locations. Economic development for Skerries will follow a policy of consolidation, with its economic performance being strengthened to maximise on its competitive advantages due to coastal location and rich architectural heritage. The economic development of the remaining small towns and rural villages will develop in an appropriately scaled manner so as to be self-sufficient.



Objective ED82

Support economic growth within the Hinterland Area through strengthening and promoting the importance of Balbriggan as the major urban centre and directing appropriately scaled growth opportunities into the other urban centres in the Area.



Objective ED83

Ensure that settlements and locations within the Hinterland Area follow policies of directional development to ensure that the required economies of scale are achieved in specific centres such as Balbriggan, and that other lower tier settlements perform to their economic strengths and competitive advantages such as Skerries and Rush for tourism and marine activities.

6.13 Land Use Zonings and Sectoral Building Requirements

Types of Economic Development Zonings

Chapter 11 Land Use Zonings of the Draft Development Plan contains the vision, objectives and matrices associated with each land use zoning. There are 21 land use zonings, 9 of which will facilitate different forms of enterprise generation and employment creation. These land use zonings feature in the Fingal Development Plan 2011-2017, and are considered to have continuing relevance and applicability to the coming Draft Plan period. These economic development associated zonings include:

  1. General Employment GE
  2. High Technology HT
  3. Heavy Industry HI
  4. Dublin Airport DA
  5. Metro Economic Corridor ME
  6. Warehousing and Distribution WD
  7. Retail Warehouse RT
  8. Rural Business RB
  9. Food Park FP

In addition to these economic development land use zonings, there is significant potential for enterprise and employment generation for the business and professional services sectors, and in the retail sector that can be accommodated within the Major Centre MC, Town Centre TC, and Local Centre LC land use zonings.

Table 6.3 below presents the economic development zonings, the zoning objective associated with each, and the total amount of each zoning for the Draft Plan period.

Table 6.3 Economic Development Zonings





Zoning

Objective

Total Amount

Zoned (Ha)

DA – Dublin Airport

Ensure the efficient and effective operation and development of the airport in accordance with an approved Local Area Plan.

1024.5

FP – Food Park

Provide for and facilitate the development of a Food Industry Park.

188.62

GE - General Employment

Provide opportunities for general enterprise and employment.

1829.7

HI – Heavy Industry

Provide for heavy industry.

293.5

HT – High Technology

Provide for office, research and development and high technology/high technology manufacturing type employment in a high quality built and landscaped environment.

690.8

ME – Metro Economic Corridor

Facilitate opportunities for high density mixed use employment generating activity and commercial development, and support the provision of an appropriate quantum of residential development within the Metro Economic Corridor.

390.3

RB – Rural Business

Provide for and facilitate rural-related business which has a demonstrated need for a rural location.

92.6

RW – Retail Warehousing

Provide for retail warehousing development.

31.4

WD – Warehousing and

Distribution

Provide for distribution, warehouse, storage and logistics facilities which require good access to a major road network within a good quality environment.

21.9



Objective ED84

Prepare Local Area Plans or Masterplans where indicated on economic development generating lands in collaboration with key stakeholders, relevant agencies and sectoral representatives. SEA Screening should be undertaken on any forthcoming LAP’s and Masterplans.



Objective ED85

Prepare and/or implement the following Local Area Plans during the lifetime of this Plan:

  • Rowans Little (see Map Sheet 2, LAP 2.A)
  • Lissenhall (see Map Sheet 8, LAP 8.A)
  • Lissenhall East (see Map Sheet 8, LAP 8.B)
  • Dublin Airport (see Map Sheet 11, LAP 11.A)
  • Cloghran (see Map Sheet 11, LAP 11.B)
  • Turnapin (see Map Sheet 11, LAP 11.C)
  • Dardistown (See Map Sheet 11, LAP11.D)
  • Cherryhound (See Map Sheet 12, LAP12.A)
  • Navan Road Parkway (see Map Sheet 13, LAP 13.B)



Objective ED86

Prepare and/or implement the following Masterplans during the lifetime of this Plan:

  • Ballymadun (See Map Sheet 3, MP 3.A)
  • Coolatrath (See Map Sheet 3, MP 3.B)
  • Barberstown (See Map Sheet 3, MP 3.C)
  • Folkstown Little (See Map Sheet 4, MP 4.C)
  • Stephenstown (See Map Sheet 4, MP 4.D)
  • Milverton (See Map Sheet 5, MP 5 D)
  • Turvey (See Map Sheet 7, MP 7.A)
  • Estuary West/Holybanks (See Map Sheet 8, MP 8.A)
  • Estuary East (See Map Sheet 8, MP 8.B)
  • Watery Lane (See Map Sheet 8, MP 8.C)
  • Seatown (See Map Sheet 8, MP 8.D)
  • Crowscastle (See Map Sheet 8, MP 8.F)
  • Airport Masterplan (See Sheet 11, MP 11.D)
  • Dubber (See Map Sheet 11, MP 11.B)
  • Clonshagh (See Map Sheet 11, MP 11.C)
  • Northwood (See Map Sheet 11, MP 11.A)
  • Kilshane (See Map Sheet 12, MP 12.A)



Objective ED87

Consider the allocation of various sizes of land parcels for economic development land use zonings in order to cater for a wide range of employment and enterprise formats.

Locations of Economic Development Zonings

The following sections include additional objectives to those included in Chapter 11 Land Use Zonings for the economic development zonings having regard to the specific locations where these zonings are applied.

General Employment

The purpose of the General Employment zoning is to facilitate opportunities for general employment uses and compatible forms of industry, logistics and warehousing. The GE zoning is the largest economic development zoning in Fingal with over 1,829 ha of GE zoned lands located principally in Blanchardstown and Balbriggan, with notable zonings in locations such as Dardistown, Cloghran, and Baldoyle.

Within the lifetime of the Development Plan, it is intended to prepare LAPs on GE zoned lands at Cherryhound and Cloghran (also on lands at Rowan’s Little that are jointly zoned as GE and HT), and to prepare Masterplans for GE zoned lands located at Turvey, Dubber, Kilshane, Folkstown Little, Stephenstown, Milverton and Ballymadun (Ashbourne).



Objective ED88

Prepare LAPs and Masterplans within the lifetime of the Development Plan for strategically important General Employment zoned lands in collaboration with key stakeholders, relevant agencies and sectoral representatives. The Masterplans at Turvey, Milverton and Ballymadun will include a detailed flood risk assessment.



Objective ED89

Encourage high quality sustainable design, permeability and pedestrian and/ or cyclist friendly environments within General Employment zoned areas.

High Technology HT

The purpose of the High Technology zoning is to facilitate opportunities for major office, science and technology, and research and development based employment within high quality, highly accessible, campus style settings. The HT zoning is one of the most important economic development zonings in Fingal with just over 690 ha of HT zoned lands located principally in Blanchardstown and Swords, supplemented with significant zonings at Dublin Airport and along the southern boundary of the County with Dublin City.

Within the lifetime of the Development Plan, it is intended to prepare an LAP for lands zoned as HT and GE at Rowan’s Little (noted above), and to prepare a Masterplan for HT zoned lands at Clonshagh.

A Masterplan will be prepared for the following areas:

  • Clonshagh (See Map Sheet 11, MP MP 11.C)
  • Airport Masterplan (See Sheet 11, MP 11.D)
  • Crowscastle (See Sheet 8, MP 8.F)



Objective ED90

Prepare LAP’s and Masterplans within the lifetime of the Development Plan for strategically important High Technology zoned lands in collaboration with key stakeholders, relevant agencies and sectoral representatives.



Objective ED91

Encourage the development of corporate offices and knowledge based enterprise in the County on High Technology zoned lands and work with key stakeholders, relevant agencies and sectoral representatives to achieve such development.

Dublin Airport Central Masterplan

Additionally, the Council, in collaboration with the DAA, will prepare the Dublin Airport Central Masterplan for strategically located lands adjacent to the airport on HT zoned lands. The

Masterplan will be a framework for the creation of a high quality commercial development comprising predominantly office accommodation, supplemented with hotel and ancillary uses, to be delivered on a phased basis.

Dublin 15 Enterprise Zone

The Dublin 15 Enterprise Zone is a Council initiative comprising lands in Blanchardstown, Mulhuddart, Damastown, Ballycoolin and Cherryhound that contain some twenty Business Parks and the ITB. The Dublin Enterprise Zone includes a mix of High Technology HT and General Employment GE zoned lands. Fingal County Council is committed to continued investment in, and management and promotion of the Dublin 15 Enterprise Zone.



Objective ED92

Support the continued investment in, and management and promotion of the Dublin 15 Enterprise Zone in collaboration with key stakeholders, relevant agencies and sectoral representatives.

Heavy Industry HI

The purpose of the Heavy Industry zoning is to facilitate opportunities for industrial uses, activities and processes that may cause or result in adverse conditions to appropriate locations. Within the Draft Development Plan, there are 293 ha of lands zoned for HI purposes, primarily located in the vicinity of the Huntstown Quarry in northeast Blanchardstown.

Dublin Airport DA

The Dublin Airport DA zoning is a unique economic development zoning within Fingal, comprising an extensive area of some 1,024 ha. The DA zoning covers all the operational buildings and lands associated with the airport and runways. Within the lifetime of the Development Plan, the Council will prepare a LAP for Dublin Airport that will outline the future vision for the airport, examine its operational requirements and the associated environmental effects.



Objective ED93

Prepare the Dublin Airport Local Area Plan within the lifetime of the Development Plan in collaboration with key stakeholders, relevant agencies, sectoral representatives and local communities.

Metro Economic ME

The Metro Economic zoning is a specific zoning created to respond to the provision of the Metro rail connection from Dublin City to Swords via Dublin Airport. The purpose of the zoning is to facilitate opportunities for high density mixed use employment, commercial and residential along and adjacent to the Metro route through the County. The ME zoning is the one of the largest economic development zonings in Fingal with 390 ha of ME zoned lands located principally in Santry/ Ballymun and in strategic locations in the Swords area, including the strategic land bank at Lissenhall.

Within the lifetime of the Development Plan, it is intended to prepare a LAP at Lissenhall and a number of Masterplans for ME zoned lands located at Estuary West/Holybanks, Estuary East, Northwood, Seatown and Watery Lane. A Local Area Plan will be prepared for Lissenhall.

A Local Area Plan will be prepared for the following area:

  • Lissenhall (See Map Sheet 8: LAP 8.A)

Masterplans will be prepared for the following areas:

  • Estuary West/Holybanks (see Map Sheet 8: MP 8.A)
  • Estuary East (See Map Sheet 8: MP 8.B)
  • Seatown (See Map Sheet 8: MP 8.D)
  • Watery Lane (See Map Sheet 8: MP 8.C)
  • Northwood (See Map Sheet 11: MP 11.A)



Objective ED94

Prepare Local Area Plans and Masterplans within the lifetime of the Development Plan for strategically important Metro Economic zoned lands in collaboration with key stakeholders, relevant agencies and sectoral representatives.



Objective ED95

Protect the integrity of the Metro Economic corridor from inappropriate forms of development and optimise development potential in a sustainable and phased manner.



Objective ED96

Ensure high quality urban design proposals within the Metro Economic zoning, incorporating exemplary public spaces, contemporary architecture and sustainable places within a green landscape setting.

Warehousing and Distribution WD

The purpose of the Warehouse and Distribution zoning is to facilitate enterprise opportunities associated with distribution, warehouse, storage and logistics activities.



Objective ED97

Prepare a Masterplan within the lifetime of the Development Plan for Warehouse and Distribution zoned lands in collaboration with key stakeholders, relevant agencies and sectoral representatives.



Objective ED98

Encourage large-scale distribution activities to locate within areas zoned WD.



Objective ED99

Ensure that sufficient land is reserved around site boundaries, in both individual sites and industrial parks to accommodate landscaping which will soften the visual impact and reduce the biodiversity loss of the development and improve the quality of the environment.

Retail Warehouse RW

The purpose of the Retail Warehouse zoning is to facilitate enterprise opportunities associated with the sale of bulky comparison goods in high quality and easily accessible locations. Within the Draft Development Plan, there are over 31 ha of lands zoned for RW purposes, located in Swords and Ballymun. Policy relating to the location of new retail warehousing is outlined in greater detail in Section 6.8 Retail Sector above.

Rural Business RB

The purpose of the Rural Business zoning is to facilitate enterprise opportunities associated with rural-related businesses requiring a rural location. Within the Draft Development Plan, there are over 92 ha of lands zoned for RB purposes located in locations such as Lusk, Rush, Ward Lower, and Blake’s Cross. Policy relating to the location of rural business enterprises is outlined in greater detail in Chapter 5 Rural Fingal.

Food Park FP

The purpose of the Food Park zoning is to facilitate enterprise opportunities associated with preparation, processing, packaging, storage and distribution of mainly horticultural products. Within the Draft Development Plan, there are over 188 ha of lands zoned for FP purposes, primarily located to the north and northwest of Dublin Airport. Within the lifetime of the Development Plan, it is intended to prepare Masterplans for FP zoned lands at Coolatrath and Barberstown.

Masterplans will be prepared for the following areas:

  • Coolatrath (see Map Sheet 3: MP 3.B)
  • Barberstown(See Map Sheet 3: MP 3.C)



Objective ED100

Prepare Masterplans within the lifetime of the Development Plan for Food Park zoned lands in collaboration with key stakeholders, relevant agencies and sectoral representatives. The Masterplan for lands at Coolatrath will include a detailed flood risk assessment.

Sectoral Building Requirements

The economic sectors outlined above have varying building requirements that the Development Plan needs to be able to anticipate and respond to.

Office Accommodation

A demand for office accommodation is required by a number of economic sectors including the traditional business sector with professional services, financial services, ICT, design and research elements of manufacturing, RD & I, and different aspects of the aviation sector. Depending on the size of the enterprise, office accommodation in a wide range of formats, sizes, arrangements and locations can be required.

The vision for larger schemes of office accommodation, including those clustering to form business parks, is to provide high quality physical environments for business, improve the attractiveness of workplaces in Fingal and thereby increase the County’s competitiveness. Proposals for office accommodation should refer to the development standards outlined in Chapter 12. The development standards seek to achieve high quality design, visual continuity and pedestrian and cycle friendly environments whilst ensuring the efficient functioning of such business locations.



Objective ED101

Ensure that a broad range of office accommodation, in terms of size, scale, format and arrangements, is provided for to adequately respond to enterprise requirements in different economic sectors.



Objective ED102

Ensure that proposals for office development demonstrate regard to the relevant development standards.

Incubation Units, Workshops, Starter Units and Home Working

The provision of adequate economic development infrastructure is important in creating the conditions conducive to enterprise generation and employment creation. In addition to typical office accommodation, specialised buildings such as incubation units, workshops and business starter units can provide SME and business start-ups with an appropriate base to engage in the production, research and enterprise activities in sectors such as manufacturing, research and development, the green economy and clean technology.

Additionally, small scale home based economic activity can be appropriate for self-employed persons or a business with a small number of employees. Once these enterprises do not have a negative impact on the amenities of an area, the Council will support their provision as part of the building formats available to meet the needs of different types of enterprises. Proposals for these building formats should refer to the development standards outlined in Chapter 12.



Objective ED103

Promote the provision of workspace units suitable for SMEs and start-up companies in general and with particular emphasis on ensuring their provision within large schemes to offer opportunities associated with clustering and networking.



Objective ED104

Support the provision of home based economic activity that is subordinate to the main residential use of a dwelling and that does not cause injury to the amenities of the area.

Industrial and/ or Manufacturing Units

A demand for industrial and/ or manufacturing units is required by a number of economic sectors including the manufacturing sector, including healthcare and pharmaceutical related activities. Depending on the size of the enterprise, industrial and manufacturing accommodation in a range of formats, sizes, arrangements and locations can be required. Indeed, over the coming Development Plan period demand is likely to emanate from the data centre, bio-pharmaceutical, food production and logistics activities that require specific facilities to meet their exacting requirements.

In similarity with the vision for business parks referred to above, the Council’s intention is to provide high quality physical environments for industry, improve the attractiveness of workplaces in Fingal and thereby increase the County’s competitiveness. Proposals for industrial and/ or manufacturing accommodation should refer to the development standards outlined in Chapter 12.



Objective ED105

Ensure that a range of industrial and/ or manufacturing units, in terms of size, scale, format and arrangements, is provided for to adequately respond to enterprise requirements in different economic sectors.



Objective ED106

Proactively respond to the needs of enterprises undertaking pharmaceutical, data centre, food production and logistics activities that require bespoke building facilities to meet their specific manufacturing requirements.



Objective ED107

Ensure that proposals for industrial and/ or manufacturing buildings demonstrate regard to the relevant development standards.



Objective ED108

Encourage better integration of industrial areas into the urban fabric of the County, resolving tensions between uses and enhancing the security and permeability of industrial areas for pedestrians and cyclists as well as businesses.

Distribution and/ or Logistics Units

A demand for distribution and/ or logistics units is required by economic sectors including the manufacturing sector, elements of the aviation sector, and elements of the retail sector. Depending on the size of the enterprise, distribution and/ or logistics units in a range of formats, sizes, arrangements and locations can be required.

In similarity with the vision for industrial parks referred to above, the Council’s intention is to provide high quality physical environments associated with the distribution and logistical activities. Proposals for distribution and/ or logistics accommodation should refer to the development standards outlined in Chapter 12.



Objective ED109

Encourage developments which are likely to generate significant levels of freight traffic to locate close to the existing County or national road network having regard to TII policy.

Local Facilities

It is appropriate for small scale support facilities to be located within employment areas. These are aimed at providing accessible services and facilities for employees within the immediate area and would be restricted to the size necessary to serve the local employees. Uses such as restaurants, cafes, childcare facilities, convenience retail units are considered to be suitable. It is important that such facilities are not of an excessive scale or range that would impact on the viability of existing local centres.



Objective ED110

Facilitate Local Support Facilities at identified locations providing a small range of uses to serve the needs of employees.



Objective ED111

Encourage the provision of Local Support Facilities to serve the needs of the employees within major employment areas.

  • [1] Corporate Plan 2015-2019, Fingal County Council, March 2015, Table 1 Rateable Businesses, pg 5.
  • [2] Economic Development Strategy 2014-2017, Fingal County Council, Table 2: Top 25 Commercial Employers in Fingal, pg 6.
  • [3] Quarterly National Accounts, Quarter 2 2015, September 2015, Central Statistics Office, pg 2.
  • [4] Monthly Unemployment October 2015, Statistical Release, Central Statistics
  • [5] Quarterly Economic Commentary, Autumn 2015, September 2015, Economic and Social Research Institute, pg 2.
  • [6] Quarterly Economic Commentary, Autumn 2015, September 2015, Economic and Social Research Institute, pg 2.
  • [7] Enterprise 2025 – Ireland’s National Enterprise Policy 2015 – 2025 ,November 2015, Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation.
  • [8] Dublin Economic Monitor, Spring 2015, DKM Economic Consultants, Dublin City Council, Fingal, Dun Laoghaire Rathdown, and South Dublin County Councils, pg 13.
  • [9] Action Plan for Jobs 2015, January 2015, Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, pg 8.
  • [10] As above, pg 9.
  • [11] Action Plan for Jobs 2015, Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, January 2015, pg. 135.
  • [12] The remaining founding members are the Dublin Airport Authority (DAA), Dublin City University (DCU), Dublin Institute of Technology (DIT), Dublin City Council (DCC), North Dublin Chamber of Commerce (NDCC) and Ballymun Regeneration Ltd (BRL).
  • [13] Action Plan for Jobs 2015, Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, January 2015, pg. 132.
  • [14] Action Plan for Jobs 2012, Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, January 2012, pg 87.
  • [15] Action Plan for Jobs 2013, Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, January 2013, pg. 27.
  • [16] Making it in Ireland: Manufacturing 2020, 2014, Forfas, pg vi.
  • [17] As above, pg 21.
  • [18] Census of Industrial Production – Local Units, Regional and County Data 2012, Statistical Release July 2014, CSO.
  • [19] Such as The Future Skills Needs of the Manufacturing Sector to 2020, Expert Group on Future Skills Needs and Forfas, 2013.
  • [20] A National Aviation Policy for Ireland, August 2015, Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport, pg 6.
  • [21] Analysis of CSO trade data
  • [22] As above, pg 7.
  • [23] The Policy states that by 2020, Irish airports will handle in the region of 33 million passengers per annum, up from 25 million passengers recorded in 2013. Of that figure Dublin Airport catered for 20.2m passengers in 2013, and 21.7m in 2014.
  • [24] A National Aviation Policy for Ireland, August 2015, Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport, pg 42. A hub airport combines local passengers with transfer passengers enabling airlines to operate services to more destinations and more frequently than could be supported by local demand alone.
  • [25] As above, pg 47
  • [26] Dublin Airport Economic Impact Study, April 2015, InterVISTAS, pgs 25-34.
  • [27] As above, pg 31.
  • [28] InterVISTAS Economic Impact of European Airports, January 2015
  • [29] Building on Recovery: Infrastructure and Capital Investment 2016 – 2021, September 2015, Department of Public Expenditure and Reform
  • [30] A ‘job year’ equates to one individual being employed for a period of one year
  • [31] Action Plan for Jobs 2015, January 2015, Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, pg. 121.
  • [32] Guidelines for Planning Authorities: Retail Planning, April 2012, Department of the Environment, Community and Local Government, pages 3-4.
  • [33] Convenience goods include food, beverages, tobacco, and non-durable household goods.
  • [34] Comparison goods include, for example, clothing, footwear, furniture, furnishings, household equipment, medical and pharmaceutical products, educational and recreational equipment, and bulky goods which includes goods sold in retail warehouses, household appliances, carpets, furniture, tools and equipment for the house and garden.
  • [35] Gross Lettable Floorspace Need is defined as including all areas available for let except common mall areas/ circulation areas.
  • [36] In Table 5.10 of the Retail Strategy (pg 63) an error was made as a 20% upward adjustment was applied to the Comparison floorspace figures instead of a 25% adjustment as was referred to in the text. The figures in this table are correctly calculated for a 25% adjustment.
  • [37] Guidelines for Planning Authorities: Retail Planning, April 2012, Department of the Environment, Community and Local Government, page 28.
  • [38] A Retail Warehouse is defined as a large single-level store specialising in the sale of bulky household goods, while a Retail Park is defined as a development of three or more retail warehouses in the Guidelines for Planning Authorities: Retail Planning, April 2012, Department of the Environment, Community and Local Government, page 54.
  • [39] Action Plan for Jobs 2015, January 2015, Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, pg. 119.
  • [40] Fingal Tourism Strategy 2015-2018, May 2015, Fingal County Council, pg 4.
  • [41] Action Plan for Jobs 2015, January 2015, Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, pg 115.
  • [42] Food Wise 2025: A 10-year Vision for the Irish agri-food industry, July 2015, Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine, pg 1.
  • [43] As above.
  • [44] National Field Vegetable Census 2009, 2009, Dept of Agriculture, Food and the Marine, and Bord Bia.
  • [45] National Soft Fruit and Protected Vegetable Census 2013, 2013, Dept of Agriculture, Food and Marine, and Bord Bia, pg 6.
  • [46] As above, pg 27.
  • [47] Action Plan for Jobs 2015, Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, January 2015, pgs 118-119.
  • [48] Strategy for Small and Fishing Dependent Communities in counties Louth, Meath and Dublin, Bord Iascaigh Mhara, November 2013, pgs 30-31.

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