Waste no more time on Ballykelly by-pass, Sugden urges minister

EAST Londonderry MLA Claire Sugden has welcomed a commitment by the Minister for Infrastructure to consider again proposals for a Ballykelly bypass, but said too much time had already been wasted.

Minister Nichola Mallon told Ms Sugden in response to an Assembly question that proposals would be looked at as part of a new transport plan looking as far forward as 2035.

“The need for a bypass – and even the preferred route – was identified more than 10 years ago,” Ms Sugden said. “The scheme went no further than that, but if anything the situation has become even worse for commuters and residents of Ballykelly.

“Tailbacks and congestion are common at all times of day, severely impacting important links between Coleraine, Limavady and Derry.

“The current development of the Regional Strategic Transport Network Transport Plan (RSTNTP) is welcome – particularly the minister’s commitment to looking again at Ballykelly within the scope of the plan.

“That the plan will include investments and improvements up until 2035, however, does not build confidence that we will see movement on this imminently.

“As we have seen before, it is very easy to plan and promise, but it is only the delivery that really matters to people.

“I hope when the plan is published it will include this important improvement to the A2, along with a commitment to seeing it happen in a timely way.”

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