• 03 Mar 2023

RIAI Addresses Joint Committee on Housing, Local Government and Heritage on Planning and Development Bill 2022

The RIAI called on the committee to adopt a multidisciplinary approach that increases transparency in planning legislation.

The RIAI addressed the Joint Oireachtas Committee on Housing, Local Government, and Heritage on the Draft Planning and Development Bill 2022 on Tuesday 28 February. 

Kathryn Meghen, CEO of RIAI, and Charlotte Sheridan, President of RIAI, spoke to the committee about the importance of a collaborative approach between all stakeholders to develop a system of planning that enhances quality outcomes while supporting the needs the Irish people.

Kathryn Meghan, CEO of the RIAI said: “The RIAI would strongly recommend that we look to the Nordic Countries and our European counterparts, which adopt a multi-disciplinary collaborative approach between all stakeholders to deliver a design-led, three-dimensional system of planning. The RIAI believes that providing design-led plans that have had the benefit of public engagement and are delivered in a format that the public can clearly understand will create greater certainty, and could significantly reduce the number of objections and legal challenges, and enhance quality outcomes.

In proposing an alternative solution, the RIAI suggested that a new housing model should be introduced as a priority by a new Ministerial Directive for National Housing Planning Standards. The RIAI urged the members of the committee to consider the recent submission to the Minister for Housing which addresses the challenge of increasing the supply of housing: RIAI Low Rise Medium Density Housing. The Low-Rise Medium-Density Housing model would allow for the creation of places that provide high quality homes building on existing infrastructure by incorporating new housing types. The RIAI have said that making the Low-Rise Medium-Density Housing model mandatory would reduce construction complexity and cost and promote the development of smaller schemes accessible to more small–to-medium contractors and may be funded, constructed, and sold incrementally.

Representatives of the RIAI were joined by representatives of the Irish Environmental Network who also called on the committee to consider the implications of the Draft Bill on public participation and engagement processes. 

The RIAI announced that they are currently engaging in a detailed review of the content of the Draft Bill and will be making a further submission to the Department.