Re: Re: Welcome to Ireland’s ugly urban sprawl

Home Forums Ireland Welcome to Ireland’s ugly urban sprawl Re: Re: Welcome to Ireland’s ugly urban sprawl


@Heritage Council wrote:

A New Road to Travel or
Landscape, Bloody Landscape
PART ONE: Thinking about it
This is not about motorways. 2,4,6,8 or any other variety.

This is not a rebel song – it is about landscape, bloody landscape.

This is about something so blindingly obvious that I really have to ask the question why it hasn’t happened already. Ireland needs a Landscape (Ireland) Act. Not an Act to stifle development, not an Act to fossilise our environment but an Act which focuses directly on what is Ireland’s most important asset i.e. where all of us live, work and play and which contains all our natural and cultural resources i.e. OUR LANDSCAPE. Why we don’t have such legislation already is hard to comprehend. Providing it would be good for everyone who lives on or visits this Island.

The signposts have been pointing us in this legislative direction for a long time. As far as the future well being of our landscape is concerned we are now most definitely at a major cross-roads and have to make a major choice. Experience dictates that the choice should be the route marked LEGISLATION and that if we take it everyone will benefit.

Why? Because it would give us a focus and structure in which we can work to resolve all those current issues which today seem to make such graphic headlines. These include loss of farm incomes, decline in rural tourism, decline in quality of life and many others too numerous to mention.

Why? Because it will bring us in to line with every other European Country and it will allow us to live up to the commitments we undertook when Ireland ratified the European Landscape Convention.

PART TWO: Realising it
Recent articles in the media have highlighted the concerns about our landscape. You really must have had your head in a fertiliser bag if you are not aware of the coverage on our agricultural landscape. The decline in farmers, the decline in farm incomes, the age profile, the nitrate directive, the Common Agricultural Policy, the World Trade Talks have all loomed and doomed large. Similarly the urbanisation of our tourism industry and the impact on rural economies, the loss of the traditional bed and breakfast accommodation, difficulties of access to the hills, and a lack of provision for countryside recreation have all been cited as contributory factors in our difficulties of keeping rural economies diverse, healthy and dynamic. In short a healthy and dynamic rural economy equates to a diverse, healthy and dynamic landscape.

That bag over your head would need to be particularly thick to have you unaware of the impact of new infra-structure on our landscape (Tara), to say nothing of the debate on rural housing (everywhere), village design and heaven forbid sustainable development.

Well let’s face it, landscape is very relevant to our everyday lives. We all live, work and play in a landscape. Surely something so significant deserves to be looked after in the best way possible and be the subject of a particular focus. Our democracies work through legislation, and legislation is what our leaders use to focus, to provide finance and structures to make the democracy work. It all sounds so simple.

PART THREE: Doing it

If I look at the last 10 years the case for new legislation for our landscapes has been carefully constructed to a point where the blindingly obvious decision now needs to be taken. This is not to criticise any existing systems or legislative provisions, such as our Planning Acts. Heaven forbid. They are for different purposes. It is just to say that if we are to resolve current issues new approaches and new legislation are needed.

The work of the Heritage Council whether on]

Any Thoughts?

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