The never-ending saga over Apple’s European data center in Ireland appeared to be over when ‘final’ planning approval was granted back in August, but no: three residents have filed a new appeal that will now go all the way to the High Court.
One resident, however, wants to demonstrate that these objections represent a minority view, with most locals glad of the jobs and money the center will bring to the area. He is organizing a march in support of Apple …
It’s been more than 18 months since Apple first announced plans for the data center, designed to bring greater connectivity to European customers and also meet privacy concerns by storing customer data in Europe rather than the USA. Planning permission was quickly granted before an appeal was lodged on environmental grounds. After some to-ing and fro-ing, the planning body An Bord Pleanála have the final go-ahead almost three months ago.
Three locals have now appealed to the High Court to have planning permission overturned. The court agreed to Apple’s request to fast-track proceedings to minimize further delay, and the case will be heard next week, on November 7.
In a bid to show that the wider Athenry community is in support of Apple’s plans, local residents are planning a march through the town centre this Sunday. Many of them are deeply upset that Apple’s data centre is facing ongoing delays and some of them are concerned that Apple will abandon its plans altogether if it’s held up much longer.
The March sets off from Athenry Church at 11:45am. At the time of writing, a little over 100 people have said that they will be attending.