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Vacant Sites

As directed in Section 6 of the Urban Regeneration & Housing Act 2015, all planning authorities must maintain a Vacant Sites Register.


Since 2017, and under Section 6 of the Urban Regeneration & Housing Act 2015, all local authorities maintain a Vacant Sites Register (downloadable below).

Following assessment by the planning authority, a vacant site can be entered on the register where it has been vacant for a minimum period of 12 months preceding the assessment, has an area in excess of 0.05 hectares, is zoned for either residential or regeneration purposes and is consistent with the criteria as set out in the Act.

On an ongoing basis, the Council assesses sites (with particular emphasis on sites which are suitable for housing) for possible inclusion on the Vacant Sites Register.


In the case of residential land:

  1. The site is situated in an area of housing need
  2. The site is suitable for the provision of housing, and
  3. The site or the majority of the site is vacant or idle

In the case of regeneration land:

  1. The site, or the majority of the site is vacant or idle, and
  2. The site being vacant has an adverse effect on existing amenities or reduces the amenity provided by existing public infrastructure and facilities.

The Vacant Sites Register and Levy

On a demand being made by the planning authority, the owner of the vacant site will be liable for payment of a levy (calculated by the planning authority at 7% of the market value of the site) in respect of each year until the site is no longer vacant. Levies will be charged every year, while payment will be due in January for all levies due in the preceding year.

What information is on the Vacant Sites Register?

As set out in Section 8 of the Act, each vacant site placed on the register includes the following information:

  • A description of the site (including a map)
  • Where the site comprises registered land, the folio details
  • The name and address of the owner
  • Particulars of the market value of the site
  • Such other information referred to in the Act that the Minister may prescribe

Additional information in relation to date of entry and specific location is provided for ease of reference.

Appeals Process

When notified by the planning authority of its intention to include a site on the register, a property owner may object to the proposed inclusion and can make a appeal to the planning authority within 28 days.  Having considered the appeal, the planning authority may proceed to enter the site onto the register or not.

If the site is to be placed on the register, the planning authority must notify the property owner of the decision and the owner may, within 28 days, appeal this decision to An Bord Pleanála. No further action will be taken in terms of the proposed entry until such time as the appeal has been dealt with by An Bord Pleanála.

The planning authority is obliged to determine the market value of a vacant site as soon possible after the site is entered on the register, and at least once every 3 years thereafter, and notify the owner accordingly. The owner may appeal this valuation to the Valuation Tribunal within 28 days of the notice. Subject to the right of appeal on a point of law to the High Court, the decision of the Valuation Tribunal is final.