Laois planning applications continue despite pandemic
The Covid-19 pandemic has temporarily halted most building work, but Laois people have been busily planning new houses and commercial buildings for when it is consigned to the history books.
The number of planning applications made to Laois County Council in 2020 was almost the same as it was in 2019.
There were a total of 571 valid applications submitted to the local planning authority, compared to 576 the previous year.
Another 151 applications were made but these were deemed invalid and returned to the applicant.
Of the 571, just 19 were refused, a rate of 3.3%.
511 were granted planning permission.
There were 15 applications appealed to An Bord Pleanála in 2020.
The council's Chief Executive is John Mulholland.
"Despite the very difficult year of 2020, people are planning for the future. It is somewhat surprising given where we were last Spring," he said.
Many people also availed of the council's free pre-planning meeting service, which were held over the phone during lockdowns. There were 311 meetings held up to December 31 2020, giving the public a chance to discuss their plans before sending in applications.
Laois County Council gave the figures at their December/January monthly meeting, held online as a Teams meeting.
All planning applications are made public for comment, on the council's website, www.laois.ie/departments/planning