Planning Portal

Derry Area Plan 2011 Published

Published on Mon, 22 May 2000
The Department of the Environment today published the Derry Area Plan 2011.
The Plan and associated maps set out policies and proposals to guide development in the Derry City Council area up to the year 2011.
Today's publication follows consideration of the detailed Report of the Planning Appeals Commission into over 300 objections to the Draft Plan. At the request of the Department the PAC presided over a lengthy Public Inquiry which was held between September 1997 and September 1998.
The Planning Appeals Commission's Report is also published today together with the Adoption Statement which sets out the Department's decisions in respect of the objections.
Speaking about the Plan the DOE's Divisional Planning Manager Jim Cavalleros said, "This forward looking document is being published to inform the general public, Statutory Authorities, developers and other interested parties of the policy framework and broad land use proposals which will be used to guide development up to the year 2011. We aim to promote the sustainable development of the Derry City Council area by making provision for economic development, while protecting its natural assets for the future."

Key Issues

Regional Role

The Proposals and Policies contained in the Plan reinforce the City's role as the regional centre for the North West.


The Plan releases for development over 600 hectares of land for housing throughout the City with the potential to satisfy housing need up to 2011. The Plan also identifies opportunities for additional housing development in a range of settlements within the District.


To sustain the continued expansion of the industrial/service sector the Plan zones some 200 hectares of land throughout the District for industrial development. Areas for development include additional land at Maydown/Campsie and at Culmore.
The land released can accommodate a variety of industrial uses ranging from manufacturing to information technology and research and development.


The Plan endorses the role of the City Centre as the principle retail centre for the district and region and continues to support the functions of the District and Local Centres.
To further strengthen the City's retail attraction the plan provides for a new retail warehouse development at Crescent Link. In the light of this and consideration of the PAC's Report it is now the Department's intention to Grant Planning Permission, in principle, in respect of the Planning Application, submitted by Sears Group Properties, for a development incorporating retail warehousing, hotel and leisure uses.

Riverside Strategy

The Plan recognises the need to re-establish the links between the City and its riverside and sets down broad objectives and design principles for development along the Foyle.
Within the strategy a number of development opportunities and redevelopment areas have been identified.

The Environment

In addition to defining a Green Belt around the City and Countryside Policy Areas the Plan identifies Areas of High Scenic Value along the Foyle and Faughan and designates a number of areas of conservation and amenity importance.
For the first time the Plan gives protection to four Historic Gardens, Parks and Demesnes and designates Areas of Townscape Character throughout the District.

The Rural Area

To support a vibrant social and economic environment in the rural area the Plan identifies opportunities for a broad range of appropriate development in twenty settlements across the District.

Other Issues

The Plan also contains Proposals and Policies on a range of other topics including Recreation and Open Space, Tourism, Community Facilities and Transportation and a section focusing on the Central Area of the City.

Further Studies

In response to specific recommendations contained in the PAC's Report the Department proposes to prepare a Local Plan for the area in and around the City of Derry Airport and carry out a study of the area immediately surrounding Prehen House.

Notes for Editors

Pat Quinn Principal Planning Officer Derry Divisional Office will be available for interviews. Please contact Philip Maguire or Michael Henderson, DOE Press Office, on 028 9054 0013 or 028 9054 0014.

Statutory Procedures

The Derry Area Plan 2011 is a Development Plan prepared by the Planning Service, an Agency within the Department of the Environment under the provisions of Part III of the Planning (NI) Order 1991.
This document comprises the Written Statement of the Derry Area Plan 2011. It should be read in association with the accompanying maps. The statement and maps set out the policies and proposals to guide development in the Derry City Council Area up to the year 2011.
The Department published the Draft Derry Area Plan 2011 on 8 July 1996. The statutory time for objection ran from 8 July 1996 to 19 August 1996. A total of 294 objections were received during the objection period. Upon consideration of objections the Department requested the Planning Appeals Commission (the Commission) to convene a Public Inquiry. All objections were available for inspection from 27 January 1997.
The Public Inquiry into the Draft Area Plan commenced on 2 September 1997 and was conducted on various dates until 1 September 1998.
In May 1999 the Commission reported to the Department on its consideration of the objections. The recommendations contained in the report by the Commission have been fully considered by the Department in finalising the outcome of the objections and the consequent revisions to the Plan, Written Statement and maps. Full details of the Department's response to the Commission's recommendations are set out in the Derry Area Plan 2011 Adoption Statement 2000.
The Department is now publishing the Derry Area Plan 2011. This document incorporates all the amendments outlined in the Adoption Statement and replaces all previous plans for the Derry City Council area.

Further Studies

The Department proposes, subject to the availability of resources, to prepare a Local Plan for the area in and around the City of Derry Airport. It is also proposed to carry out a study of the area immediately surrounding Prehen House, with a view to bringing forward proposals for the use of these lands.
The Plan Designates the centre of Eglinton as an Area of Townscape Character . The Department will assess the effectiveness of this designation before deciding if further control, such as Conservation Area status, is necessary.

Purpose Of The Plan

The purpose of the Plan is to inform the general public, Statutory Authorities, developers and other interested bodies of the policy framework and broad land use proposals which will be used to guide development up to the year 2011. It provides guidance on the amount and nature of development which can be expected and where it can best be located so as to create an overall environment that will enhance the quality of life for the people of Derry District.
The Derry Area Plan 2011 will provide the context for and continue to support Urban Policy Initiatives promoted through the Londonderry Development Office and set a land use framework which will contribute to the City Partnership Board's Vision for the City.
The Plan provides a policy framework only and does not deal with matters of detail which will be resolved through the Development Control process.

Regional Policy Context

The strategic and regional policy framework for the Derry Area Plan 2011 is currently provided for by the Draft Regional Strategic Framework, the Planning Strategy for Rural Northern Ireland and by a series of Planning Policy Statements.

Draft Regional Strategic Framework

In December 1998 the Department published the Draft Document "Shaping Our Future Draft Regional Strategic Framework for Northern Ireland". This document sets out for public comment a strategic and long term perspective on the future development of Northern Ireland up to the year 2025. It provides a spatial framework for action helping to inform and guide the whole community and will influence the future distribution of activities throughout the region.
The Regional Strategic Framework is not limited to land use and addresses a range of economic, social, environmental and community issues which are relevant to delivering the objectives of achieving sustainable development and social cohesion in Northern Ireland.
The Regional Strategic Framework has several functions:
  • to provide a strategic planning framework for strengthening the regional economy and tackling social disadvantage;
  • to protect and enhance the physical, natural and man-made assets of the region;
  • to provide a spatial framework for transport, air and water quality, energy and waste strategies, and for infrastructure providers and public service promoters;
  • to provide an overarching strategic framework for Development Plans and to guide public and private investment decisions relating to land use.
The Regional Strategic Framework identifies Londonderry as the Regional City and Hub of the North West. Its aim is to build on recent achievements by a Spatial Development Strategy to:
  • strengthen the City's economy;
  • continue to regenerate the City;
  • promote an attractive and historic City.
The Draft Regional Strategic Framework was the subject of a Public Examination during Autumn 1999 and the Report of the Independent Panel was published in February 2000.

Plan Aim

The aim of the Plan is to give guidance on the amount and nature of development which can be expected and where it can be best located so as to create an overall environment that will enhance the quality of life for the people of Derry District and reflect the role of Derry/Londonderry as a regional centre for the North West.

Objectives Of The Plan

In achieving its declared aim the Department will have thefollowing objectives:
  1. promoting the sustainable development of the Derry City Council Area by making provision for economic development while protecting its natural assets and man-made heritage for the enjoyment of future generations;
  2. identifying sufficient land for development in appropriate locations to meet all anticipated needs enabling the City and District to achieve their full potential;
  3. encouraging a vibrant City capable of serving its regional hinterland and of sustaining all the functions comparable to any other city of its size in Western Europe;
  4. establishing a logical City Development Limit having regard to the prevention of urban sprawl, ribbon development and the coalescence of surrounding villages as well as the quality of the physical environment;
  5. developing a coherent strategy for the important landscapes associates with the River Foyle and its tributaries;
  6. conserving and improving those elements of the existing building stock which are of particular architectural or historic interest;
  7. encouraging the re-use of the City's important heritage of former shirt factories;
  8. developing a transportation strategy for the City and District which will facilitate movement throughout the entire area and which is accessible insofar as is practicable to those with special needs. Alternative means of transport to the private car, such as cycling, will be promoted;
  9. identifying and conserving those features of nature conservation value;
  10. including sufficient land within the development limits of villages and small settlements to satisfy local housing and community needs taking account of their size and environmental constraints;
  11. making efficient use of existing infrastructure and utilities such as roads, sewage treatment works and water supply;
  12. protecting key assets for the tourist industry in the city and countryside while giving favourable consideration to proposals for tourism development which are appropriate in terms of their nature, scale and location;
  13. ensuring that all development wherever located pays appropriate attention to good design, landscaping and detail and to the character of its vicinity.
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