Public participation vital for a successful town development plan

Athlone Town Council is looking for members of the public to have their say on the new Athlone Town Development Plan for 2014 - 2020.

An eight week public consultation process was launched this week with the Mayor of Athlone, Alan Shaw, calling on the people of Athlone to get involved in the future of their town. Members of the public have until Tuesday April 17 to make their submissions to the plan.

“This is a very exciting time for Athlone as we commence the process of planning forward towards 2020,” Cllr Shaw said.

The town development plan sets out the overall strategy for the planning and sustainable development for the area of Athlone and its environs for a period of six years. Whether it’s tourism, education, transportation, the environment, enterprise and employment, or culture and the arts, this plan will address all of these issues as part of an overall core strategy.

Public participation is vital for a successful plan, in order for the end result to be a true reflection of the needs and wants of the people of Athlone.

“Now is the time for the public to have your say,” urged Cllr Shaw.

A total of 31 submissions were received by Athlone Town Council at the draft stage of the 2008-2014 town development plan and they hope to receive more submissions on the new 2014 - 2020 plan.

Issue papers regarding the plan are available to the public and these form the basis of a period of consultation which lasts for eight weeks. The public are invited to make submissions during this phase on any issues of relevance to them.

Athlone Town Council hope the new development plan will reflect the wishes and aspirations of the people who live in the town. These issue papers present some of the issues which the council considers important to the plan. They are intended to stimulate debate but do not purport to cover all the issues. The council wants members of the public to tell them what issues most concern them.

Cllr Shaw went on to say that “it is imperative that the Athlone Town Development Plan reflects the wishes and aspirations of the people who live in the town”.

The documents are available on the Town Council website, www.athlonetowncouncil.ie

Submissions can be made online at www.athlone.ie/udc/atp, by email to [email protected], or by post to the Town Clerk, Athlone Town Council, Civic Centre, Church Street, Athlone.

The closing date for submissions at this phase is April 17.

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