PPS 4: Industrial Development
Development Control: Expansion of Rural Enterprises
48. Many industrial enterprises exist in the countryside. While the expansion of such enterprises may lead to job creation, it can also impact adversely on the environment. Planning permission for the expansion of an industrial enterprise currently located in the countryside may be granted where
- there is no significant increase in the site area of the enterprise, although minor extensions rounding off of the site may sometimes be acceptable;
- there are no significant building works - within Green Belts and Countryside Policy Areas, no new buildings (other than minor extensions to existing buildings) will generally be permitted, whereas in the rest of the countryside, new buildings may be permitted provided they are small in scale;
- the increase in trade would not result in unacceptable traffic levels on nearby roads or a significant increase in the use of an existing sub-standard access; and
- the new development, together with existing facilities, can be satisfactorily integrated into the local landscape and will not result in an unacceptable loss of amenity to nearby properties and to the area generally.
Where proposals for expansion of an industrial enterprise in the countryside are considered inappropriate, the Department may recommend relocation of the enterprise to a suitable site in a nearby settlement. Exceptionally, where it is accepted that relocation is not possible for particular operational or employment reasons, expansion may be permitted.