The public is being invited to have an input on a new blueprint for sustainable development in Co Cork.
A series of meetings has been arranged where the public can engage with council officials as they draw up a six-year plan which will come into force in 2015.
County manager Martin Riordan said that while the pace of construction had slowed considerably in recent years, it was still essential to develop a plan which would establish a sustainable platform for the economic recovery of the county.
“There are numerous challenges facing the county which include ways of accelerating growth in metropolitan Cork, managing pressure for rural housing in outer areas and the development of a sustainable energy policy.
“The 2015-2021 development plan process is an opportunity for the people of Cork to shape the future development of the county.”
The main thrust of the blueprint will be further development on the periphery of Cork City, which is known as Metropolitan Cork. The council wants to maximise population growth in that area.
As part of that plan it has already signed off on developing a new town of between 3,000 and 5,000 houses at Monard, near Blarney.
Mr Riordan previously acknowledged that, due to the economic climate, the proposed town was likely to be built on a phased basis, only, as demand for houses was not likely to pick up for a number of years.
The council plan will also concentrate on ensuring town centres retain their vitality.
The development of on-shore wind farms will form part of the blueprint for green energy growth in the county, while a review of rural housing will also be undertaken.
The council has prepared consultation documents which will provide background documents and detailed survey information on the general thrust of the plan.
Details of the documents are on the council’s website, www.corkcoco.ie
The public can also view hard copies of the documents at county council offices, or can opt to get a CD from council offices or the council’s planning policy unit in County Hall.
Anybody wishing to learn more about the plan will be invited to three forthcoming meetings.
The first, for those living in the South Cork administrative region, will be held in County Hall on Jan 29 from 2pm to 4pm and 6pm to 8.30pm.
For those living in West Cork, a meeting will be held in the Quality Hotel, Clonakilty, on Jan 31 from 6pm to 8.30pm.
The North Cork meeting will take place at the Hibernian Hotel, Mallow, on Feb 5, also from 6pm to 8.30pm.
Submissions can be made to the senior planner at the planning policy unit, Floor 13, County Hall up until 4pm on Mar 4.
The council will hold a series of public consultation meetings later in the year, and again next year, before finalising the blueprint which is likely to be adopted by councillors in early 2015.
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