The number of planning permissions granted in the Midlands region has almost halved in the past year, according to figures released by the Central Statistics Office last week.
Some 448 planning permissions were granted across the Midlands in the second quarter of 2009, in sharp contrast with 857 during the same period last year.
There was a similar trend in Westmeath, where there were 133 successful planning applications in the second quarter of 2009, compared with 242 in the same period last year.
The recent figures reveal that Laois was the busiest county in the Midlands when it came to building activity, with a total of 174 planning permissions granted in Q2 2009. Westmeath came a close second with 133, while the figures for Offaly and Longford were significantly lower at 100 and 41 respectively.
The previous year, there were 304 successful applications in Laois, 218 in Offaly, and 93 in Longford.
Of the 448 permissions granted in the Midlands region in Q2 2009, the majority were for new dwellings, amounting to 212. Some 135 were for extensions; 64 were classified as ‘other’ which includes commercial, agricultural, and industrial buildings; and 37 were for alterations and conversions.
Nationally, the number of dwelling units approved fell by 37.5 per cent in the past year. In the second quarter of 2009, planning permissions were granted for 12,831 dwelling units, compared with 19,942 units for the same period in 2008