23 October 2014 No Comments by The Northern Standard

sean conlon

Monaghan Co Council’s acquisition of 20 acres of land and 17 vacant houses on the Latlorcan site in Monaghan Town – the contract for which was expected to be signed this week – marks the realisation of a Sinn Féin proposal tabled in 2012 and looks set to deliver “overdue” and much needed housing and recreation provision, Colr Sean Conlon stated this week.

The Monaghan Co Councillor and current Cathaoirleach of Monaghan Municipal District said the delivery of a supply of land and housing units into the local authority’s ownership marks the successful fulfilment of the intent behind a motion tabled by his party at a meeting of Monaghan Town Council in October 2012, which sought the Council executive to commence negotiations with the relevant agencies with the intent of purchasing the undeveloped lands adjoining the town by-pass.

Colr Conlon stated: “Unfinished housing developments, ‘ghost estates’ and vacant land originally approved for housing have blighted the length and breadth of our county and country for over half a decade, with a drip-feed response by this and the previous Government in their poor attempt at resolving outstanding issues.

“These included building site wastelands and safety hazards beside the homes of residents who watched their overpaid housing investment fall deeper and deeper into negative equity.

“Where playgrounds and green spaces were presented on glossy sales brochures, too many homeowners, the majority being first-time buyers, had their dreams shattered as failed developers and banks bickered over ownership. The governments of the day practically ignored the beleaguered residents and focused more on ensuring the banks were protected and bailed out.

“With a view to presenting a positive alternative to this unsatisfactory situation, my SF colleagues and I put forward the necessary proposal, unanimously agreed by the full Town Council, which initiated appropriate and overdue action.

“After two years of protracted negotiations, it has been confirmed recently by the Co Council’s Chief Executive that the signing of contracts for the purchase of 20 acres of land and 17 vacant housing units at the Latlorcan site is now imminent.”

Colr Conlon acknowledged that the vacant land coming into the ownership of the local authority is in the immediate vicinity of existing privately owned dwellings.
He continued: “I accept there may be reservations among some of the neighbouring occupants regarding house building plans by the Council into the future. I assure them that this extensive parcel of land will be far better managed than what may have been the case if a private developer had made the purchase and resumed house building in this area.

“During my initial proposal I emphasised the need to have a consultation opportunity for residents of the Latlorcan area regarding future development plans. I also suggested that a sizeable portion of this land bank could be zoned for the purpose of recreation amenity. I am confident this approach will have the backing of all interested stakeholders.

“In continuing my efforts of putting right the misfortune experienced by the residents in this area, I am committed to ensuring appropriate use of this land that will finally regularise the planning and building difficulties that have beset this development for far too long.

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