Minister ‘excited’ about Coleraine masterplan

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SOCIAL Development Minister Nelson McCausland has launched a 12 week period of public consultation on the draft masterplan for Coleraine town centre.

The purpose of the masterplan is to provide strategic guidance for the regeneration and development of Coleraine town centre for the next 15-20 years.

Proposals include:

* a new distributor road connecting Lodge Road to Ballycastle Road which will open up development opportunities and provide alternative access points to the town;

* a new east link road to Railway Road which will provide a further link to the strategic road network;

* the creation of a town centre waterfront of international quality;

* a new civic space along Railway Road;

* a new pedestrian footbridge across the River Bann and additional pedestrian and cycle trails along both sides of the river and

* the identification of key sites for development opportunities.

Mr McCausland, speaking during his visit to Coleraine on Thursday, said: “This is an opportunity for everyone who has an interest in Coleraine town centre to have a look at what is proposed by the draft masterplan and have their say.

“It is important for the people of Coleraine to feel part of this process and make their views known. There are some very exciting proposals in the draft masterplan that will help Coleraine move forward and develop into a thriving and prosperous town.”

“A revitalised town centre will ensure that Coleraine re-establishes itself as a retail hub, tourist destination and business centre with a waterfront and marina that will add vibrancy and new life to the town.

“The proposals for Coleraine town centre are exciting and I want the Coleraine public to have their say. I would encourage anyone with an interest in the town’s future to let us know what they think of the draft masterplan over the next 12 weeks.”

The mnayor of Coleraine, Alderman Maurice Bradley said: “Coleraine Borough Council has been working in partnership with Minister McCausland’s department and the consultants to help progress the design and vision for the future of our Town. I am pleased to invite the people of Coleraine to participate in the Coleraine Town Centre Masterplan consultation.

“For twelve weeks, our residents and ratepayers can have their say on the proposals put forward on how Coleraine should develop in the next 15 to 20 years. This Masterplan is an opportunity for local people to express their views and I would encourage everyone to take an interest and respond to this opportunity.

“I would like to thank the Minister and his department for all the work and effort they have invested in this process to date and look forward to continued partnership working and very positive outcomes for Coleraine.”

The Paul Hogarth Company was appointed in July last year to complete the masterplan at a cost of £79,055.

The draft masterplan will be on display until October 14 between 10.30am to 3.30pm in Coleraine Town Hall. Officials manning the display will be available up until Wednesday this week to answer any queries. The display will then be unmanned after that,

From October 15 to November 7 the display will be in Coleraine Leisure Centre. Details of other possible locations will be made available at a later date. A comments sheet will be available at all venues for all interested parties and the general public to complete throughout the period of the consultation.

The draft masterplan will also be available to view on both the DSD website at www.dsdni.gov.uk and Coleraine Borough Council’s website www.colerainebc.gov.uk and comments can be returned online.