The matter was referred to the planning appeals board by Kerry County Council.
Kerry County Council asked An Bord Pleanala if the erection of a gate across a laneway at Fossa, Killarney was development or exempted development.
It followed a request from Donal Coffey for a declaration on the question.
In their ruling An Bord Pleanala says the gate constitutes development under the Planning and Development Act 2000.
The board says the erection of the gate consists of the fencing or enclosure of land which was habitually open or used by the public during the ten years preceding its erection as a means of access to the lakeshore of Lough Leane and therefore planning exemptions don’t apply.