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Westmeath County Development Plan 2008-2014
2.7 COMMUNITY RECREATION & AMENITY
2.7.1 Amenity, Open Space & Recreation Provision for Amenity, Open Space & Recreation The provision of open space, recreation and amenity facilities, which can cater for the demands of an increasing population and that will be accessible for all sectors and age groups of our population, is a central element in the delivery of sustainable communities. The Council recognises the role that good quality open space, recreation and amenity facilities can play in creating healthy environments and facilitating more active lifestyles to ensure the wellbeing and improved quality of life of the entire community. In this regard, the Council shall seek to improve and develop opportunities for active and passive sporting, recreational and physical activity and the enjoyment of amenities, which our lifestyle today, may not otherwise offer. The Council considers that high quality open spaces, green linkages, such as walk and cycle ways and sports and recreational facilities that are usable and accessible to all should be provided in line with development and changing community needs. The Council will employ a flexible and strategic approach to the delivery of open space, recreation and amenity facilities to ensure that the existing and future residents and visitors to the county are most appropriately provided for. P-CRA1 It is the Council‟s policy to ensure that sufficient and appropriate open space, recreation and amenity facilities; public and private, urban and rural and passive and active are provided to meet the changing needs of new and existing communities. P-CRA2 To require high standards of provision of open space and recreation facilities as part of new residential schemes; in quality of design, layout, landscaping and safety and security, especially in proposals for higher densities. P-CRA3 To ensure that new open space areas and recreation facilities are accessible to all sections of society, particularly children and youth, the elderly and those with disabilities; and to seek to improve the accessibility of existing facilities. P-CRA4 To ensure that new open space and recreation facilities are within easy reach of homes, either within walking distance or close to public transport services. P-CRA5 To facilitate and encourage the enhancement of the quality and setting of the County‟s urban form. O-CRA1 O-CRA2 To ensure that sufficient land is allocated for use as open space, recreational and amenity uses. To require, through development management, that the provision of open space and amenity for new residential development be phased in line with the phasing of development. To implement quality and quantity standards for open space, recreation and amenity provision, as set out in Part 7. To secure new recreational and amenity facilities and the improvement of existing facilities in line with new development, through adopted development contribution schemes and through the development control process. To actively encourage and support the provision by private developers of additional recreational and amenity facilities across the county, including swimming pools, gyms, cinemas, play areas, playgrounds or other such amenities. To seek greater variety of provision of recreation and amenity facilities to reflect demand of increasingly diverse populations. To develop an open space strategy for the major Towns, linking existing and established open space areas in a co-ordinated strategy to compliment the