Thursday, 19 May 2022
Ceisteanna ó Cheannairí - Leaders' Questions
I thank Deputy Danny Healy-Rae for raising this important issue. As he will be aware, the Government, the party I lead, and, indeed, the Minister of State, Deputy Peter Burke, who is responsible for planning in this area, support the right of people to build rural housing on land that they own in order that they can live in their communities or live near their parents, as the case may be. However, we have to get the balance right between proper planning and people's right to build their own homes on their own land.
What we want to avoid when it comes to national roads is too many traffic movements on and off the road. We want to avoid additional entrances and exits because that can slow the traffic, which is an irritation for everyone and which can also create road safety issues with lots of vehicles coming onto and off busy national roads. I agree that there should be a distinction between existing entrances and exits and new ones. I suppose it requires a commonsense and pragmatic approach, and that should be done on a case-by-case basis. Where there is an existing entrance or exit, that is different and it should be treated differently to somebody who wants to create a new one.