History and Legislation

Cork, like most cities worldwide, has a history of boundary extensions.  The city was expanded in 1840, 1955 and 1965.  In the last extension, areas like Model Farm Road, Fairhill, Ballyvolane, Glasheen, Wilton, Ballinlough and Blackrock village all became part of the extended city. 

In January 2015, then Minister Alan Kelly, TD, established the Cork Local Government Review Committee (CLGRC) under section 28 of the Local Government Act 1991.  The Committee was required to carry out an objective review of local government arrangements in Cork city and county, including the boundary of Cork city, the local government areas and the local authorities for such areas, and to make recommendations for improvements in such arrangements. 

The CLGRC failed to agree a preferred solution for the future administration of local government in Cork, with two diverging reports emerging in September 2015:

  • Majority Report recommended an amalgamation of Cork City & County Councils
  • Minority Report recommended an extension to the boundary of Cork City Council

In September 2016, the Cork Expert Advisory Group was appointed to review the reports of the Cork Local Government Review Committee.  Their report, which became known as the Mackinnon Report, was published in June 2017.  This report proposed an extended boundary that would:

  • Reflect existing and current planned pattern of urbanisation around the City
  • Give the extended City the scope to plan sustainably for future urbanisation
  • Result in a City of scale that reflects its position as Ireland’s second City
  • Provide a real counterweight to Dublin in national terms

In July 2017, then Minister Simon Coveney, TD,  appointed a three-person "Cork Local Government Implementation Oversight Group" (IOG).  Its terms of reference included planning and overseeing the implementation of the expert advisory group's report, but also adjusting the boundary line.  The IOG facilitated discussions between the chief executives of the two councils, who reached an agreement in December 2017 on a compromise whereby the city would be extended to include Ballincollig, Blarney, Glanmire, and Cork Airport, but not Little Island or Carrigtwohill.

The Local Government Act 2019 was signed into law by the President of Ireland in late January 2019 and provides the legislative basis for the expansion of the administrative area of Cork City Council.  The legislation can be read here.

The Local Government Act 2019 established the Cork Boundary Alteration Implementation Oversight Committee (IOC). Section 19 of the Act requires the oversight committee to make an Implementation Plan setting out the matters to be addressed by the two local authorities in order to achieve the timely, effective and equitable implementation of the boundary alteration to the administrative areas of Cork City and County Councils.

This Implementation Plan sets out the principles and methodologies to be used during the implementation process, and defines a timetable for the implementation of the actions required to deliver the new arrangements.  The Implementation Plan can be read here.

On May 31, Cork City will grow to nearly five times its current size and the population of the city will grow by 85,000 to 210,000.  The increase in size of the City will allow Cork City Council to take a take a lead role in driving the growth of the city and metropolitan region – driving improvements in investment, public transport, infrastructure and housing.

Staff at Cork City Council are working with Cork County Council to ensure that the transition of public services is as efficient and as seamless as possible. With time, a bigger Cork City will also provide us with scope to further improve and expand our services to the public.  

For queries in relation to the Cork City Boundary Extension, please email boundary@corkcity.ie

Click here for a map showing the extent of the boundary extension.

A joint newsletter from Cork City and Cork County Council was issued to all 35,000 households in the transfer area in early April.  A copy of this newsletter is shown in the 'Related File(s)' section below.  This newsletter is available in both English and Irish.