National Spatial Strategy

The National Spatial Strategy 2002-2020 is a 20-year coherent national planning framework for Ireland.  It aims to guide the achievement of a better balance of social, economic and physical development across the country, supported by more effective and integrated planning.

In order to drive development in Ireland’s regions, the NSS supports areas of sufficient scale and critical mass being built up through a network of gateways and hubs  - Dublin, Cork, Limerick/Shannon, Galway and Waterford together with the towns of Dundalk and Sligo and the linked gateways of Letterkenny/(Derry) and the Midland towns of Athlone/Tullamore/Mullingar. In addition, the NSS identified nine, strategically located, medium-sized "hub" towns which will support, and be supported by, the gateways and will link out to wider rural areas.

The NSS is implemented through regional and local planning by regional and local authorities.