The proposed development of a Nearly Zero Energy Community (NZEC) at Kilbride, County Meath comprises a low-rise settlement aiming to achieve a balance between a reasonable level of self-sufficiency and being part of the broader regional context. It is, therefore, intended to realise and integrate in the development many of the concepts associated with environmental sustainability at different scales. This Report concerns the approach proposed to urban design, including public realm and landscape, and the architecture along with its energy performance. The ideas outlined below are intended to complement concepts of sustainability included in two associated Reports on: Population and Housing in the Greater Dublin area (GDA) and County Meath; and Principles of Sustainable Land-use and Transport Planning. These three documents form part of an overall Report concerning the Nearly Zero Energy Community at Kilbride.
The existing site comprises pastoral farmland with a cut stone farm building and contiguous outbuildings constituting the farmyards of the earlier Priestown estate. The land throughout the proposed site is relatively flat except for a noteworthy low undulating ridge running on a northeast-southwest axis between the farm cluster and a church and pub at Kilbride. Lands zoned for industrial use are located to the south, immediately outside the site and just beyond a shallow east-west running river / stream and its floodplain. GAA grounds are located to the southeast whilst existing small residential estates are located to the northeast.