Planning Portal

PPS 4: Industrial Development
Development Plans: Zoning Land for Industry

17. When preparing development plans, the Department will seek to ensure that the land zoned for industrial purposes within the main settlements is sufficient in amount to meet foreseeable needs, based on the take-up patterns experienced in preceding years. It will seek to identify sites which offer a good choice of size and location. The full range of industrial employment, both traditional and new, will be taken into consideration. Government policy places increasing emphasis on private sector provision of industrial land. Accordingly, the Department will endeavour to meet the expected needs not only of the Industrial Development Board and the Local Enterprise Development Unit but also of private sector developers.
18. It is important that the new employment opportunities created by industrial development are accessible to a substantial workforce drawn from all sections of the community. Government policy on Targeting Social Need has focused attention on towns in economically and socially deprived areas, which often have least land zoned, or held in industrial land-banks, because of previous investment patterns. Where this situation has arisen, the Department will seek to redress it by zoning additional land to provide extra development opportunities.
19. In the course of plan making, the Department will make a qualitative assessment of potential industrial sites in terms of their environmental amenity and physical suitability. It will avoid industrial zonings which would cause conflict by damaging sensitive areas such as sites of nature conservation importance or give rise to serious loss of environmental quality in adjoining residential areas. Where previously zoned land has remained underdeveloped for a considerable period the Department will ascertain whether the zoning is still realistic. If it is not, the land will be de-zoned, or allocated for another purpose.
20. Previously developed urban land which is ripe for re-development may provide opportunities for industrial development perhaps in conjunction with other uses. The existence of redundant factory premises and derelict industrial land can be an important resource for the creation of new job opportunities in areas of high unemployment. Such brownfield sites are often well suited to re-development with balanced mixed-use schemes which include an element of industrial development.
21. The Department will encourage new industrial development in locations which minimise the length and number of trips by road and can be served by more energy-efficient modes of transport, such as walking, cycling and use of public. It will give preference to sites which are readily accessible to transport nodes, transport including bus stops, railway stations, sea terminals and airports. Indeed, potential industrial development sites may exist on disused or under-utilised land adjacent to rail and port facilities.
22. The Department will, where possible, zone for industry, land which is free from physical constraints. Where additional infrastructure and significant expenditure are required to bring sites into commission, the development plan will set out the servicing requirements. Developers may have to contribute to the costs of provision. Sites which will be excessively expensive or difficult to develop will not normally be zoned for industrial purposes.
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