NRA bids to derail Supermacs’ plaza plan

Plans by Supermacs supremo Pat McDonagh to repeat the success of his Barack Obama Plaza in Co Clare are in jeopardy.

NRA bids to derail Supermacs’ plaza plan

The National Roads Authority (NRA) has voiced its strong opposition to plans by Mr McDonagh to construct a rest stop and drive-thru just off the motorway linking Limerick and Gort outside Ennis.

Mr McDonagh lodged his plans in December with the promise of creating 100 permanent jobs in the development, along with an additional 75 jobs during a 12- month construction period.

The fast food business has already spent €10m on the Barack Obama Plaza near Moneygall, in Co Offaly, and it is already in the top ten performing Supermacs outlets.

The Clare service station building, to be located off the M18 at Kilbreckan, Doora, would have a floor area of 2,126 sq metres and include a retail shop, restaurant and drive-thru.

However, the NRA has lodged a submission with Clare County Council against the proposal stating it “is at variance with official policy in relation to control of development on national routes… and is therefore contrary to the proper planning and sustainable development of the area”.

The NRA also states that the plan “is not in compliance with NRA Service Area Policy”, pointing out it “would lead to the creation of a traffic hazard for the national road network and also traffic using the proposed development”.

The roads authority also stated that the plan is at variance with official policy in relation to road frontage development on or affecting national roads.

The NRA has told the council that “the subject proposal located in an unzoned rural area in the vicinity of junction 12 of the M18 represents an off-line service area in close proximity to a national road junction. It is not an NRA service area”.

Consultants for local business Claureen Service Station have also lodged an objection stating the plan is contrary to the Clare and Ennis and Environs Development Plans as the site is located on unzoned lands and outside zoned boundaries.

Applegreen — which operates a network of service stations around the country — has also lodged a submission, but wishing only to be kept informed of developments. However, the submission allows Applegreen to lodge an appeal against any decision to An Bord Pleanála.

Applegreen itself has lodged plans for an off-line motorway service area six miles south of the Supermacs plan on the M18 motorway at Dromoland. A decision is due on the Supemacs plan later this month with a decision on the Applegreen plan next month.

Supermacs boss Pat McDonagh yesterday declined to comment.

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