Posted by Chaaa! on August 27, 2008 at 22:41:02:
In Reply to: re: re: mayo county evelopment plan posted by Paddy McGuinness on August 25, 2008 at 23:13:09:
If you don't mind me saying so the arguments proposed 'in favour' are deeply flawed.
Just to take one of the 'arguments-in-favour'. The idea, for example, that we should build one-off rural houses because they don't need much in the way of public services suggests that PMcG has not lived in the kind of one-off rural houses that Mayo CoCo's councillors have gone out of their way to allow to proliferate all over the roads of the county.
First of all they are anything but 'one-off' - they are aligned in ribbons radiating along almost every road in the County. Even the national routes rarely have a gap of more than 100m between 'one-off' front doors in spite of NRA rules (and of course the speed-limit for cars driving up and down outside your front door there is a mere 100km/h). The roads that most ribbon houses open onto are incredibly dangerous due to lack of footpaths and heavy traffic coming from all the other so-called 'one-off' houses along the road. Eventually they become much too dangerous to cycle or walk along as more and more people upstream sites get 'the planning'. The idea that they do not need public services like footpaths and cycle paths - decent electric voltages, cable TV, high-speed broadband internet access may sound good to those who are selling 'the site' but it grates a bit when you realise that you are never going to have 24Mbit broadband or that you really do need to get in the car to get a pint of milk simply because it's too dangerous to walk or cycle into town - even at 2 euro per litre for petrol coming soon to a pump near you. Your children can't go outside on the road because it's too dangerous. No school buses either without a long walk (or drive) for most to the nearest pickup point so it's not worth it.
And of course they do not need proper sewage treatment - the smelly cesspools you find half way down the back garden are the norm not the exception. It's well known that percolation tests are often faked - no one from the council ever check the septic tank after the fact so there's no advantage in being honest if it means you won't get the planning? Where (other) county councils have gone to the trouble of checking septic tanks the majority of them are found to be polluting hotspots (irrespective of any high-minded phrases about proper sewage treatment put into their county development plans).
So will Mayo CoCo be penalising people who have septic tanks that are
The idea that rural people have good immune systems and don't need public services like safe drinking water is another myth not mentioned. Professionally engineered and properly filter, monitored and sterilised water systems are essential for life. The kind of amateur, typically contaminated, group scheme water schemes are not good enough to keep out Cryptosporidium for example. And bringing them up to a safe spec sure is for sure a public service that is more than just a little expensive for the taxpayer (and see thread above for how people feel about paying the real price of safe water). Just to provide safe water for the thousands of cheap 'one-off' rural houses will require a huge subsidy from the urban-dwelling taxpayer.
Most of Mayo's best ribbon houses are at the point where they need proper speed limits and even pedestrian crossings to allow people to cross the road safely. Should they not have safe cycle paths to the nearest shop? Should they not have footpaths to take their kids out for a safe walk or a cycle to view the joys of nature without being mown down by a neighbour's 4x4.
It may be 'cheap' on public services - alright in the short term - but cheap comes at some real long-term costs. Especially for those living in these houses.
And that's just one of the 'points-in-favour' paragraphs in Mr McG's list chosen at random. Tune in later for more. Each and every argument mooted can be shredded methinks.
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