Building materials group CRH is set for a boost to its plans to develop a major deepwater port on a 200-acre site it owns south of Arklow, Co Wicklow.

The new Wicklow county development plan, which is currently being amended, emphasises the council's support for the project, with CRH having previously told the local authority that it has held talks with potential partners about developing roll on-roll off and/or load on-load off facilities on its land there.

"The potential for the development of a new port at Arklow Rock is also recognised with connections to the N11 and possibly the Dublin Outer Orbital Route increasing the potential for the development of this area. A road line will be reserved to facilitate the development of this proposed port," the draft development plan states. CRH had previously told the council that the development potential of Arklow Rock as a port can only be realised by the construction of such a road.

CRH has been operating the site as a private port since the early 1960s but, it wants to enter commercial-port operations "together with the possible future development of marine leisure and related onshore facilities".

About 60 acres of the land could be used to service port activities, CRH said, with the remainder used as a quarry.