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06 Dec 2021

Shop canopies and awnings still need planning permission despite Covid-19, Kildare County Council meeting hears

No change in shelter regulations

Shop canopies and awnings still need planning permission despite Covid-19, Kildare County Council meeting hears

Kildare County Council offices at Aras Chill Dara

Kildare business owners must still apply for planning permission if they wish to construct an awning or canopy above their shopfronts to shelter customers queuing due to Covid-19 restrictions.

The matter was discussed at last Wednesday’s Kildare County Council meeting of the Kildare Newbridge Municipal District.

KCC has temporarily waived Section 254 license applications for businesses who want to use public footpaths as outdoor seating areas — but it was confirmed at the meeting that canopies and awnings still require planning permission.

KCC published shopfront design guidelines in 2013 which gave design recommendations regarding canopies on shops.

Among the recommendations were that a shopfront’s architectural details should not be obscured with the installation of a canopy and they should compliment the design and character of the building.

Canopies and awnings should be kept from signage, according to the guidelines.

The should also not interfere with the visibility of traffic signals and signage.

Cllr Mark Stafford, who raised the issue, suggested that certain canopies or awnings should be considered exempted development. Sheltering customers from inclement weather in a post-Covid-19 era is an issue that is going to have to be dealt with, he noted.

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