Decision Regarding Planning Application For New Driving Test Centre Location Due By Jan 25th

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A decision on a planning application from the Office of Public Works for a new Driving Test Centre location in Tipperary town is due to be made by January 25th.

The application submitted to the Council’s Planning Authority by the Office of Public Works was first submitted in August of 2023 seeking permission to establish a Driving Test Centre at the Government Offices on Davis Street.  In October the Planning officials requested further information from the applicant and this was submitted on December 20th.   The current Driving Test Centre operates at the Canon Hayes Recreation Centre – this lease would end if the new facility is established.

The most recent documents reveal that the existing car parking arrangement for which this application relates currently has 4  car parking spaces and provision for dual emergency access in the event of a fire/accident within the overall site. Within the present Government building it is estimated that one to two vehicles enter/exit the site per hour within their operating hours Monday to Friday in tandem with it’s casual use as a through road to Bohercrow Road.

It is proposed to provide a new road entrance layout to improve sightlines, new road markings on the public road to prevent illegal parking, 5 standard sized car parking spaces and a disabled access space. The number of driving test applicants per day and hours of operation confirmed by the Road Safety Authority(RSA) are as follows; The level of vehicular activity is up to 16 scheduled tests per day Monday to Friday 8:30am to 5:30pm. There is optional Saturday scheduled testing (5 applicants) 8:30am to 2:00pm depending on operation demand. It can be estimated by the RSA that two cars leave and two cars enter the car park per hour per day Monday to Friday 8:30am to 5:30pm. The RSA wish to continue with the same level of scheduled testing as outlined above, therefore no large increase in use of the upgraded carpark area is proposed according the information submitted on December 20th 2023.

The proposed driving test centre will accommodate cars (B/B1 Category) only within the parking area provided.  In the event of larger vehicles i.e. trucks and trailers (C/C1) a suitable location within Tipperary Town will be utilised for any Truck Parking Tests by the RSA and thus will not take place within the proposed Driving Test Centre. There is a very small volume of C1/C tests conducted averaging at around 8-10 per month according to the RSA.

The application states that the “proposed present layout can accommodate three applicants, two testers and an additional disability car parking space, which is sufficient to accommodate the tester to applicant ratio. The site presently adjoins and utilises the existing car park to the rear and the Davis Street Car Park (Post Office) so it is foreseen that this can be used for staff parking only when needed. Overall there will be no requirement for parking or set down off site but flexibility will be given to the RSA Testers for their own personal vehicles.”