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1.0 Town Context/Character

Ballivor is located in the southwest of County Meath close to the Westmeath border. It is approximately 15km west of Trim, 16km northeast of Kinnegad and 11km south of Athboy.  The town is located at the intersection of two county roads and a regional road, the R156.  Ballivor has developed in a linear pattern along the R156, which links Mullingar to Dublin.  The town  provides for a wide range of facilities and services at present.

Position in Settlement Hierarchy


2016 Population


2011 Population


Percentage Change 2011-2016


Housing stock 2016


Number of units completed 2016-2019


Committed units not yet built


Population Projection 2027


Education Facilities         

St. Columbanus Primary School; and Giggles Childcare

Community Facilities

Permissions for two extra facilities

Architectural Conservation Areas (ACAs)


Protected Structures


Zone of Archaeological Potential


Natura 2000 Sites

The nearest site is the River Boyne & River Blackwater SAC and SPA approximately 2km to the north east of the town

Strategic Flood Risk Assessment

Flood Zones A and /or B encroach on lands to the south of the R156.  Manage flood risk and development in line with approved policies and objectives as set out in Vol. 1 Chapter 6: Infrastructure.  

Water Services Infrastructure/Capacity

Ballivor Water Treatment Plant - Capacity Available.
Ballivor Wastewater Treatment Plant - Capacity Available.

2.0 Vision

The vision for the development of Ballivor over this Plan period is to consolidate the town and provide for future needs through (re)development of infill and backland sites, support existing and proposed community facilities, and continue efforts to improve employment opportunities.  Conserving and enhancing the quality of the town’s built and natural environment will also make a positive contribution to the town.  Natural/organic residential growth will be encouraged over the lifetime of the Development Plan, in line with the Development Plan Core Strategy. A central tenet of this Plan will be the creation of a positive relationship with the rural hinterland. 

3.0 Opportunities

  • There are vacant buildings (including recently constructed units) along the Main Street as well as underused land and this provides an opportunity to strengthen and consolidate the primacy of this street through encouraging redevelopment and alternative uses.
  • The range of services and facilities in Ballivor is good and the built form of the settlement provides opportunity to retain and strengthen these services/facilities which is important to the vitality of the town.  
  • Securing a viable employment use for the former NEC Semiconductors site would significantly benefit the economy of Ballivor and the surrounding area and help sustain local facilities and services.

4.0 Land Use Strategy

The aim of the land use strategy is to consolidate and strengthen the town centre and promote (re)development of strategically located land within the town.  The Core Strategy of the County Development Plan seeks to provide for natural growth in a sustainable manner integrated within the existing town’s built environment.

4.1 Settlement and Housing

There are a number of existing established housing developments in the town.  Having regard to the  Core Strategy  there is adequate land zoned for residential and town centre uses in the town to cater for future housing and commercial/service needs of the town over the lifetime of the Development Plan.

4.2 Economy and Employment (Including Retail)

The town provides for a wide range of retail / commercial services commensurate with its level 4 position in the County retail hierarchy.  Retail and service provision includes a pharmacy, gift shop, veterinary supplies, two pubs/restaurants, three convenience/grocery shops, two cafes, petrol station / convenience shop, two barbers, post office, credit union, hair/beauty premises, butchers, take-away, bookmakers, and a hardware store.

There are a number of backland sites zoned for B1 ‘Town Centre’ uses which provides opportunities for small to medium sized enterprises. There are also a number of vacant units on the main street, the occupation of which has the potential to re-vitalise the street.

The former NEC Semiconductors industrial facility which extends to 12,500 sq.m.  in area is zoned for E2 ‘Enterprise Use’. This site represents a significant opportunity for employment with the town. There are sufficient and appropriately located lands zoned for town centre and employment generating uses to cater for the needs of the town over the lifetime of the Development Plan.

4.3 Water Services Infrastructure

The town is currently served by the following Water Services Infrastructure:
Water: Ballivor is serviced by local ground water boreholes and treatment plants. There is considered to be adequate capacity to serve the development and growth provided for over the lifetime of the Plan

Wastewater: Ballivor Wastewater Treatment Plant serves the town. It has limited spare capacity. This capacity is considered adequate to serve the development and growth provided for over the Plan period but this will be kept under review.

4.4 Movement

Movement and access within the town is centred along the main street (the R156) which is somewhat vehicle dominated. Bus Éireann provide a commuter link from Ballivor to Dublin via Summerhill and Maynooth.  It is important to manage vehicular traffic passing through the town and to provide safe crossing facilities for pedestrians and cyclists. There are opportunities to encourage some movement patterns away from the main town ‘spine’ route. 

4.5 Cultural and Natural Heritage

There are a number of buildings and structures of historical significance within Ballivor including Ballivor Health Centre, St. Columbanus RC Graveyard, Saint Columbanus’ RC Church, Parkstown House, and Saint Kinneth’s CoI Church.  Saint Kinneth’s Church in particular provides an opportunity to open up town centre lands for the benefit of the community.

There are no Natura sites within the town although the streams that flow through Ballivor ultimately drain to the River Boyne which is a designated as the River Boyne and River Blackwater Special Area of Conservation (Site Code: 002299) and the River Boyne and River Blackwater Special Protection Area (Site Code: 004232).  This Natura 2000 site is located approximately 2km north east of the town.  There are a number of noteworthy tree stands within the town which warrant protection (see objectives below). 

4.6 Green Infrastructure

Whilst there are several open space areas within housing developments, the town is lacking in structural/landscape open space.  There is potential to develop a pathway along the stream to the south of the town and thereby begin the process of developing a green walking/cycling network.

4.7 Social Infrastructure

The town is well provided for in terms of social infrastructure which includes a primary school, a church, burial ground, Credit Union, Garda Station, health centre, community centre, childcare facility, and a GAA facility.  The school which was recently constructed has playing fields and hard surfaced areas.  The realisation of the recently permitted GAA development at Killaconnigan which includes playing pitches and a clubhouse will further enhance the social infrastructure of the town. The town  would also benefit from a community park/playground.

The Council are currently investigating the provision of a library facility in Ballivor. The restoration and renovation of St. Kinneth’s Church to accommodate such a use is being explored. The Ballivor Renaissance Community Plan is also acknowledged as setting out the community’s aspirations for the town from a social perspective. The Council is satisfied that sufficient lands have been reserved for social/community infrastructure to accommodate both existing and proposed future populations over the lifetime of the Development Plan.

4.8 Urban Design and Public Realm

The town has a natural focal point at the staggered crossroads and the town has largely retained its rural town character.  There is however potential to place greater emphasis on the staggered crossroads as it is noted that both corners of where the Athboy Road meets the main street are vacant and inactive.  It would be desirable to see the public realm and streetscape improved through enhancing landmark/focal points by redeveloping neglected sites and obsolete areas, reduce the actual/perceived dominance of roads and vehicles, and improve the town aesthetics (including street finishes, footpaths and the public domain). 

5.0 Town/Village Development Policies and Objectives

The Policies and Objectives set out below are in addition to those included in the Written Statement in Volume One of the County Development Plan. To avoid repetition Policies and Objectives have only been restated where they have particular relevance to the settlement. These Policies and Objectives should therefore be read in conjunction with the Policies and Objectives and Development Standards in Volume One of the County Development Plan.


It is the policy of the Council:

Settlement and Housing


To promote the future development of Ballivor as a compact settlement centre with a pedestrian friendly environment, a variety of land uses and amenities while protecting the built and natural heritage and catering for the needs of all sections of the local community to ensure that the town develops in a sustainable manner, as an attractive place to live, work recreate and visit. 


It is an objective of the Council:

Settlement and Housing


To secure the implementation of the Core Strategy of the County Development Plan, in so far as is practicable, by ensuring the household allocation for Ballivor as set out in Table 2.12 of the Core Strategy is not exceeded.


To support and encourage residential development on under-utilised land and/or vacant lands including ‘infill’ and ‘brownfield’ sites, subject to a high standard of design and layout being achieved

Economy and Employment


To consolidate the central area of the town for commercial uses and promote infill/backland development.


To take a pro-active and flexible approach towards securing an alternative employment use for the former NEC Semiconductors site in conjunction with relevant stakeholder.


To seek to provide an Enterprise Centre within the former NEC site.


To seek the reuse of buildings and other facilities including car parking on the former NEC site where possible for employment generating uses.



To liaise with and support Irish Water to endeavour to provide adequate water services to meet the development needs of the town within the Plan period.


To manage flood risk and development in line with the Strategic Flood Risk Assessment. (see Volume 4 Strategic Environmental Assessment, Appropriate Assessment and Strategic Flood Risk Assessment).



To promote walkway/cycle loops in and around the town, and in particular along the stream to the south of the town, and to the new GAA facility.


To support appropriate traffic management and environmental improvement measures throughout the village.

Cultural and Natural Heritage


To seek to provide a community facility at St. Kinneth’s Church. 


To protect the significant stands of trees in the town as identified in the land use zoning map including those to the front of the Primary School, to the front of Glebe House off the Trim road, and along the Kinnegad Road.


To facilitate and support the implementation of the community led-Ballivor Biodiversity Action Plan 2018-2022.



To protect existing community facilities where appropriate and support their further development and expansion if required.


To facilitate and support the implementation of the Ballivor Renaissance Community Plan and other community led projects to generally enhance the town while ensuring that the projects which emanate from same are consistent with the development objectives contained in this Written Statement for the village.


To investigate and if feasible to provide a library facility in Ballivor. To explore the restoration and renovation of St. Kenneth’s Church to accommodate such a use.

Urban Design and Public Realm


To implement and ensure compliance with the Public Realm Plan for Ballivor which provides for a themed strategy for the provision of street furniture, planting, traffic and parking, lighting, building colours, (local and tourist) signage and surface materials etc. within the village.


To seek to enhance landmark/focal points in Ballivor by redeveloping neglected sites and obsolete areas.


To improve street finishes, footpaths and the public domain generally.


To preserve the character of the town and its setting by requiring that the height, scale and design of any proposed development within the town complements the character of the town and does not diminish its setting.