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Northern Ireland round-up: Councils struggle to meet major application-handling target; Mayor praises publication of council’s key planning documents

Words: Roger Milne

A round-up of planning news in Northern Ireland: 2 July-8 July, 2016

Councils struggle to meet major application-handling target in NI

Only one Northern Ireland council - Antrim and Newtownabbey Borough Council - met the statutory 30-week average target for processing major planning applications last year, according to the Department for Infrastructure’s latest annual statistical report.

The Planner 

RTPI: Is planning reform heading in the right or wrong direction?

The RTPI is seeking the views of its members on the impact of recent planning reforms to the UK's planning systems and on their work.

The Planner

Mayor praises publication of council’s key planning documents

Derry and Strabane Council’s planning department has published two key documents this week, including the timetable for producing the local development plan, which should be prepared and under examination by the second quarter of 2020.

Derry City and Strabane District Council 

Renewable Heat Incentive Scheme mistakes must never be repeated, says committee

A Stormont-run renewable heat scheme for non-domestic buildings has exceeded its budget dramatically owing to bad management and administrative shortcomings, the Audit Office has reported.

Northern Ireland Assembly 

Short-stay luxury flat complex proposed for historic central Belfast hostel building

Proposals to convert some of the upper floors of the former Presbyterian War Memorial Hostel building in Belfast into a short-stay serviced flats facility have been unveiled.

Belfast Telegraph 

Appearance of sinkholes near oil drill site and pipeline for gas sparks concern

Sinkholes have appeared on farmland close to the Carrickfergus forest where exploratory oil drilling was carried out.

Belfast Telegraph 

£400,000 plan to ease Belfast's SSE Arena traffic misery

The Odyssey Trust has announced plans to spend more than £400,000 on upgrading the congested roads around the venue in Belfast, which are particularly bad before and after music concerts at the SSE Arena.

Belfast Telegraph

Travel Survey for Northern Ireland published

The latest Travel Survey for Northern Ireland (TSNI) report has been published, covering statistics for 2013-2015. It shows a two percentage point increase in the number of walking journeys made.

Department for Infrastructure