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Looking for advice on land boundary / planning issue

  • 07-02-2023 12:25am
    Registered Users Posts: 3,347 ✭✭✭

    Hi, a family member bought a cottage on an acre and went for planning to extend however further information was requested. The council is requiring removal of the boundary to allow 90 metre sight both ways. The problem is there is less than this on one side. Next door is a field.

    I will add the wording and would appreciate advice views and opinions please.

    The applicant shall submit a revised site layout showing:

    The provision of unobstructed sightlines of 90M in both directions to the nearside roads edge from a set back of 2.4M from the edge of the road in accordance with TII Standards. The entire nearside edge of the road shall be visible over the entire sightline.

    Where works are required, to achieve unobstructed sightlines on lands outside the ownership of the applicant then written consent of the landowner should be submitted. The red line boundary should be revised to include the works required to provide unobstructed sightlines.

    Do they want the farmers field boundary removed?


  • Registered Users Posts: 23,061 ✭✭✭✭mickdw

    They want the farmers field boundary adjusted and they want any area being adjusted included within the site boundary of this planning application.

    If I was a neighbouring farmer, I may be happy to allow minor alteration to boundary if it suited me however I would not consent to 80 or 90m of my road frontage being tied up with a neighbouring planning application.

    I have in the past seen this issue arise and planners have only asked for consent from adjoining landowner and not required the additional area to included in site layout.

    What I would do is seek consent from landowner for housekeeping type works such as hedge trimming etc if this might be enough to satisfy planners and argue then that no works that constitute development are taking place on the neighbours land and as such does not need to be included within site boundary.

    If more extreme works are needed, it's a bit of a mess as there are legal issues around the extent of the lands included on site layout.

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,083 ✭✭✭DBK1

    If there’s a grass verge between the hedge and road you may not need to have the farmers boundary hedge removed, you might get away with just cutting it well back. If that doesn’t create the line of sight then yes, you will have to get the farmer to agree to his hedge being removed and replanted further back in from the road.

    Your family member will have to cover the cost of this and if the farmer is going to lose some of his field I’m sure he will be expecting financial compensation also.

    You may be looking at it now thinking it’s all unnecessary cost but I’d have to say it’s one thing I think the councils have got right. Your family member will be in and out this entrance a few times a day for the rest of their lives along with their partner, kids, friends etc. The last thing you want to be doing is inching out onto a road you can’t see hoping there’s nothing coming because the front of the car is out to the centre of the road before you can see. It’s great comfort to be able to safely drive out your own entrance with a clear view each side and should practically eliminate an accident risk.

  • Registered Users Posts: 988 ✭✭✭minerleague

    Neighbour had to get permission (to remove part of his neighbours hedge and replant back from road) like this but house built a while now and no sign of any work actually being done

  • Registered Users Posts: 78,180 ✭✭✭✭Victor

    Can the gateway for the proposed house be moved to minimise work to existing boundaries?

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,355 ✭✭✭148multi

    Have seen this asked of locals, most get planning if hedge is cut back to soil level to give sight line

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  • Registered Users Posts: 1,272 ✭✭✭Anto_Meath

    While that might be the case, an architect cant give an opinion of compliance with planning permission (needed for the final draw down of the mortgage and for the sale of the property) so it would be best to do it at the time of construction when it is fresh in everyone's head instead of looking to get it done 10 - 20 years later with people have moved on.

    As for OP initial point, that is a regular one, you need to have a view of 90 meters in both directions, so look at moving the location of the entrance to a point on your site that maximizes the site distances available or talk to the neighboring farmer to see if he will allow you remove a section of his hedge row (assumable for a fee).

  • Registered Users Posts: 23,061 ✭✭✭✭mickdw

    Having to include this area within the site boundary is in my opinion the real stumbling block.

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,347 ✭✭✭Ginger83

  • Registered Users Posts: 8,604 ✭✭✭893bet

    he needs the neighbour to sell him a strip of land along the boundary of the field next door is my reading of it. . Not going to happen realistically.

  • Registered Users Posts: 78,180 ✭✭✭✭Victor

    Not necessarily sell, but in practice it will cost as much as a sale, as the land likely becomes useless for the farmer. A good conveyancing solicitor will have the solution.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 3,347 ✭✭✭Ginger83

    It might be time to see what the farmer thinks. I did suggest building 40M sq to the rear which is exempt as far as I know but they have plans for a much larger extension and to relocate septic tank etc.

  • Registered Users Posts: 17,902 ✭✭✭✭Bass Reeves

    OP council wording on cases like this can be obscure. Is the site on a turn or is the site line obscured.

    The requirement is that from a position 2.4 meters back from edge of the road you have a clear view for 90 meters to observe oncoming traffic.

    Often terms like land owners permission etc may not strictly e necessary or removal of there hedge row.

    TBH it was pretty sloppy work by whoever drew up the plans. They should know the requirements on sitelines.

    I am not even sure if they can enforce these with an existing dwelling as long as it is a single family home ( ie adding a granny flat might give a valid reason for new site lines) which will not increased the normal flow out of the site in theory

    Slava Ukrainii

  • Registered Users Posts: 647 ✭✭✭Whatwicklow

    A plan B could be to challenge the 90m.

    Is required for a design speed of 60kph

    If you can prove that 85% of passing drivers are at 50koh then the sight line required is 70m.

    May be an option

  • Registered Users Posts: 23,061 ✭✭✭✭mickdw

    Well for a single property, any area included within the site layout red outline will at the end of the day need to owned. Bank wouldn't mortgage for example without an Engineers declaration stating that the site layout on which planning is granted is contained entirely withing lands owned.

    As mentioned by previous 2 posters, there are other arguments to be made.

    Taking neighbouring lands inside the site layout boundary really is not a runner.

    I'd go so far as to say that if farmer was in agreement to move a boundary that this could be applied for on a separate application in farmers name, this way allowing the site boundaries be kept within ownership.

  • Registered Users Posts: 791 ✭✭✭CreadanLady

    90m tends to be a blanket requirement set by councils for sightlines, a figure that will be sufficient on nearly all roads but is probably overkill for some when you consider site specific details. Also, they are talking about TII standards - they really only apply on National Roads. You are hardly on a national road, are you? But sometimes councils just fall back on the TII standards because there isn't equivalent standardised rules for Regional and Local roads.

    Maybe you could get them to agree to a lesser sight distance by having your engineer calculate what the sight stopping distance is for the road outside your house. It might well be less than 90m. Sight stopping distance is mainly a function of speed so if you are on a quietish local road, you should end up with an SSD well less than 90m.

    They would have to do a brief survey of the road and have traffic and speed count of the road done for a day at least.

    Certainly, this is the angle I would be working if I were in your shoes rather than going to bananas blowing out ditches where there is no need. Also, there is the environmental impact of removing hedgerows that you could mention. I'd be saying that I am happy to remove ditches to give a safe sight line, but a safe sight line that is determined according to the specific site and road, not an excessive sight line resulting from application of National Road standards to a Regional/Local road, as the case may be.

    The MFV Creadan Lady is a mussel dredger from Dunmore East.

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,963 ✭✭✭cosatron

    as it's an existing cottage, can you use the existing entrance, you don't need to prove sightlines from an existing entrance of an existing cottage. Well not in galway coco anyways.

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,347 ✭✭✭Ginger83

    Hi all

    Some very good points thanks. They are using the existing entrance but it's at the corner of the site with an overall front boundary of 60M. What doesn't help is they are on a hill but it's a secondary road.

  • Registered Users Posts: 17,902 ✭✭✭✭Bass Reeves

    I be questioning the need for sitelines on an existing house as well

    Slava Ukrainii

  • Registered Users Posts: 78,180 ✭✭✭✭Victor

    Just because it would get around some restrictions doesn't mean it is safe.

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,963 ✭✭✭cosatron

    it's in the planning regulations, you do not have to demonstrate sight lines on existing entrances and roads not taken in charge of the county council, obviously in this case the applicant is applying for a new entrance hence the request for sightlines.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 3,347 ✭✭✭Ginger83

    Do you have a link to this information please?

  • Registered Users Posts: 23,061 ✭✭✭✭mickdw

    It's not as clear cut as not having to prove sightlines on existing entrance.

    If an entrance is sub standard and the proposed house extension is likely to result in increased traffic movements, I believe they can require upgrade. It may also be a case that the entrance is being altered as part of this application.

    Too many unknowns really

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,347 ✭✭✭Ginger83

    I've asked and was told it's the same existing entrance.

    50M sq cottage with proposed 80M sq extension, shed and upgrading septic tank to new location.

  • Registered Users Posts: 791 ✭✭✭CreadanLady

    Exactly . It is not as clear cut as that. Even if you are not touching entrance, the council still can apply a condition that you do this or that with the entrance, or any other number of things on or around the site.

    My approach is to negotiate a lesser sightline, if that is a reasonable thing to propose in your circumstances, which will be dictated by the road type, the design speed on it and the volume of traffic.

    The MFV Creadan Lady is a mussel dredger from Dunmore East.

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,963 ✭✭✭cosatron

    Unfortunately, i don't have a link. I have over 17 years' experience of submitting planning apps to various councils and have yet to demonstrate sightlines on a refurb or extension unless there is a new entrance being applied for. Now every county development plan is different so discuss it with your agent and planner and see. Your options would be if you're using an existing entrance would be to dig out the existing planning permission and see where the entrance is or if the cottage predates planning, you can also argue this point. TII standards are only applied to a national road so that's a whole different ball game if you're entering on to a national road.

  • Registered Users Posts: 23,061 ✭✭✭✭mickdw

    The applicants agent should be able to immediately give accurate feedback on this, be able to contact the plan er dealing with it and suggest a route forward. We are only guessing here as we don't know the road classification, speed limit, whether it's a known traffic hazard, whether the existing entrance complies with planning or predated planning.

    We also don't know the extent of the works that may be required to achieve 90m or to achieve an acceptable shorter distance.