DRD outline schemes to improve roads and rail

THE Department of Regional Development says it is working on a number of road and infrastructure schemes on the north coast.

Speaking after last week’s visit by Minister Danny Kennedy to Coleraine Borough Council, a DRD spokesperson said: “More than £12 million is currently being invested in road improvement schemes, and in the railway, in Coleraine, Ballymoney and Moyle Districts. In addition, work on the first £27 million phase of the Coleraine to Londonderry re-lay railway project is scheduled to start in June.

“This level of investment, which is being made in the face of very real financial pressures, recognises the importance of road and rail links in supporting the local economy.

“The Department’s commitment to strengthening infrastructure to encourage economic development across Northern Ireland was highlighted this week in the announcement that almost £500 million had been secured by Development Minister, Danny Kennedy, for a number of major roads schemes.

“The Department recognises there is a view expressed in Coleraine, Ballymoney and Moyle Districts that the proposed dualling of the A26 Coleraine to Ballymena road in the Glarryford area should progress as soon as possible. As well as the significant investment announced this week, development work is continuing on a number of other major projects.

“These include the A26 Glarryford to Drones Road dualling. Delivery of these projects will be determined by the Investment Strategy for Northern Ireland 2011-21.

“Investments in road improvement and maintenance schemes in the current year include £6 million in Coleraine; £3 million in Ballymoney and and £2.5 million in Moyle.

“At the beginning of this month, Minister Kennedy was in Ballymoney to launch a £1.3 million project at the town’s railway station to construct a new, fully accessible traffic-free bridge which will benefit cyclists, pedestrians and rail users. The Coleraine to Londonderry railway scheme represents a total estimated investment of some £78 million in the period from this summer through to the year 2021”