DONEGAL County Council have refused planning permission for the construction of a Covid-19 test centre in Ballybofey.
An application was lodged on August 8 by P Mulrine & Sons for the construction of a Covid-19 test centre for factory staff. The facility would have been located on lands opposite to the Mulrine’s factory.
Included in the proposed development was the provision of a vehicular entrance and car parking at the site on Donegal Road, Ballybofey,
Mulrine’s, in their application, said the company employed 180 people at their factory.
“They wish to establish a test facility for their staff for recording,” the application said.
“Temperature and a visual assessment of any possible symptoms of Covid-19 as part of their plan for managing and containing the risk of a Covid-19 cluster at the factory, which could commercially be very damaging to their business.”
Mulrine’s say they are implementing a test regime, but do not have sufficient space on the factory site to carry out this type of procedure without adversely affecting their operations.
The company proposed to test staff in a rota to coincide with the star of the employer’s shift, which runs three shifts seen days a week.
Employees would be tested in two batches of around 25 people at a time.
“The factory must take every possible step to minimise the risk of a clustered outbreak of Covid-19 to protect the violability, continuity and reputation of their business,” Mulrines’ application said.
Donegal County Council, however, have refused the application.
The local authority say that the proposed test centre is located on lands zoned ‘Opportunity Site (2) within the Town Centre as denied in the Ballybofey/Stranorlar Local Area Plan 2018-2024’.
DCC say that it is a policy of the plan to require a Traffic and Transport Assessment and Road Safety Audit for any development proposing access to the Strategic Road Network.
In their decision, Donegal County Council said: “In the absence of such detail (notwithstanding the applicants reliance on an outdated TIA and RSA from an historical application relating to an entirely separate development) and having regard to the traffic cross-over movements associated with both premises to which the development is proposed to serve, it is considered that to permit the proposed development in the absence of such information required to demonstrate that the proposed development will not adversely impact on the operational capacity, safety and efficiency of the National Road would materially contravene the aforementioned Policies of the Plan, would endanger traffic safety and would be contrary to the proper planning and sustainable development of the area.”Tags: