Development potential on 26 vacant/abandoned sites in Clare

CLARE County Council has identified 26 sites with development potential in the Killaloe Municipal District (KMD) following a review of vacant properties and derelict locations.

A house at No 4 An Garrán, Mountshannon is one of the council’s first notices of compulsory acquisition of derelict sites.

The other properties, outside Killaloe MD, are house No. 3 St Senan’s Terrace, Kilrush, a house at Cloughleigh Road, Ennis and a house at 111 Dun na hInse, Claureen, Ennis.

The Council’s Vacant Homes team is currently assessing vacant properties using Gazetteer data.

In coordination with the four municipal districts, a targeted focus on a number of towns and village centers across the county has begun.

Councilor Pat Hayes asked for an update on the current situation regarding vacant and derelict properties in KMD towns and villages at a recent meeting.

The Fianna Fáil councilor welcomed the council’s recent move to address abandonment and vacant properties as a pressing issue, with a significant increase in resources.

The Maghera councilor called on national politicians to streamline the whole mandatory purchase order process to drastically reduce the legal time needed for local authorities to complete it; in particular for the owners who refuse to dialogue with the local authority.

He said there was no point in getting rural development funds to revitalize towns and villages if there were abandoned buildings left in the center of them.

Councilor Alan O’Callaghan said it was important the council followed up with the owners to ensure they carry out the promised renovations.

Municipal District Chairman Joe Cooney praised Troy’s council-led work to bring derelict and vacant properties back into use.

Services director Anne Haugh pointed out that the authority has put in place a combined approach involving the Housing Department’s Vacant Houses Office and the Planning Department’s Derelict Sites Office.

In addition to the inspections conducted by the Vacant Housing Manager, the Abandoned Sites Office staff also conduct their own surveys of abandoned sites.

“There is a very targeted effort at the inter-departmental level. I chair meetings on a monthly basis and we report progress in the board’s monthly management report.

She said there is a national program that will tackle abandonment in towns and villages. There is also a review of the CPO process and a directive to make goods that are compulsorily purchased available on the open market.

Ms. Haugh acknowledged that the challenges associated with establishing the property, title issues, communicating with banks regarding properties in receivership and the costs associated with restoring homes continue to prevail.

However, the Vacant Homes team actively engages with landlords and seeks all options to allow vacant and underutilized properties to be put back into use as quickly as possible.

The town hall is awaiting details of the Croi Conaithe (Towns) Scheme, which aims to regenerate vacant housing in town centers and a targeted CPO initiative which will allow local authorities to acquire vacant housing with the aim of putting it back on the market. market.

It is expected that the board will become much more active in the CPO process where engagement with landlords is not yielding the desired results in the fight against vacancy and abandonment.

The Abandoned Sites Team will continue to work with the Vacant Houses Officer and elected members to advance work under the Abandoned Sites Act 1990.

It is planned to organize workshops with the elected representatives of each Commune on the theme of wasteland before this summer.

Sixteen properties were initially reviewed in Tulla after 12 required further investigation.

Five owners must carry out the renovation work themselves. Three owners did not commit. Building Control has carried out work on a property to consider it safe. Two were referred to abandoned sites for follow-up.

A property is always under investigation to establish ownership. An owner has made a commitment to the council with a view to placing the property on the open market.

The Vacant Homes section has provided owners with information on the options available to them to get their properties back into use and will continue to monitor progress.

Eleven properties were initially reviewed in Killaloe as part of a site inspection, after which six required further review.

One must be processed through the CPO; one is deemed unviable due to title and legal issues; one must be put on the open market; one is always prosecuted to establish ownership; an owner needs to carry out work on the property and there is ongoing communication with an owner and a bank for another property.

The Vacant Units Section continues to liaise and support landlords and banks in managing vacant units.

Four properties were first examined through a site inspection at O’Briensbridge.

One was referred to the abandoned sites team, one was sold on the open market, one is now occupied, and a letter has been sent to the owner.

Eight properties were initially reviewed in Broadford, after which four were identified for further review.

Two were referred to the abandoned sites section, one was subsequently sold and the owner of the other property has now committed to carry out restoration work.

There is ongoing engagement with the owner of one property and another has been rented privately.

The lack of sewer upgrades in Broadford is an issue in the progress of redevelopment of some vacant properties there.

Three properties were first examined in Quin through a site inspection.

One property has been referred to abandoned sites for follow-up, one is occupied and one is still being sought to establish a new owner.

Twelve properties have been identified in Scariff and further review of these properties has begun to establish ownership and future plans for the vacant buildings.

Carmel Greene, Senior Manager, Economic Development, noted that the Economics Branch has noted that significant progress has been made following a review and inspection of abandoned sites and existing records on those sites.

A number of these properties went on the market in February, some are in the planning stage, demolition or with renovation plans.

Eight files were opened this year compared to 35 in total last year. Nine Notices of Intent to List a Site on the Abandoned Sites Registry were issued this year after 20 last year.