Supermac’s supremo Pat McDonagh is making a second bid to open a Barack Obama-style motorway plaza for Co Clare.

Mr McDonagh yesterday confirmed that fresh plans for a motorway stop outside Ennis are to be lodged with Clare County Council in the coming days.

The first step in lodging the plans required — a newspaper notice concerning the planning application — has already been published.

An Bord Pleanála last month refused planning permission to Mr McDonagh for a rest stop and ‘drive-thru’ close to the motorway linking Limerick and Gort, outside Ennis.

Supermac’s already has plazas at Moneygall in Co Offaly and another recently opened plaza near the M6 at Loughrea in Co Galway.

Currently, there is no motorway plaza on the motorway linking Limerick to Gort. 

Only last week An Bord Pleanála refused planning permission to separate plans by Applegreen for a motorway stop 8km from the Supermac’s, near Dromoland Castle.

“There were a lot of disappointed people the last time we were refused, including ourselves, needless to say,” Mr McDonagh said.

“We had local people ringing saying they were disappointed and we took huge encouragement from that. We’re trying again and, hopefully, we will be more successful this time around.”

Building the project would create 80 jobs, and 100 jobs when the plaza opens for business.

Clare County Council gave the scheme the go-ahead earlier this year, but appeals lodged by Applegreen, local business, Claureen Service Station and a local man put the case before An Bord Pleanála.

However, Applegreen and Claureen Service Station withdrew their appeals, leaving one remaining appellant opposed to the plan.

The appeals board refused planning on three grounds, including ruling that the design would not fit in with the rural and predominantly flat landscape of the Ennis hinterland.

The board said that the project would seriously injure the visual amenities of the area and be contrary to the proper planning and sustainable development of the area.

The board also concluded that the access and exit points would endanger public safety or obstruct road users.

The appeals board also refused planning after concluding that the proposed development would raise a risk of pollution to ground and surface waters in the area.

The remaining appellant, who told the board he had a right of way across the Supermac’s site, raised other concerns about the Supermac’s plan.


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