Public meeting to discuss schools traffic

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Independent MLA, Claire Sugden, is holding a public meeting to discuss traffic issues on the Castlerock Road and surrounding area in connection with the new schooling arrangements on the west of the Bann.

The meeting will take place in the Humphreys Hall, Coleraine Academical Institution on Thursday, March 26 from 7pm.

The purpose of the meeting is to inform and seek views from road users and residents.

It’s hope that there will be representatives from the shools in the area present as well as Transport NI, Translink and Coleraine Borough Council.

Ms Sugden said: “The aim of the public meeting is to inform and garner views from residents of the area, road users and parents of pupils.

“I have been speaking with a number of groups separately and it seems there is a collective will, particularly because of the new schooling arrangements to come to a solution about the traffic problem. I have also met with the Minister who has invited me, along with the Environment Minister, to discuss a way forward.

I am therefore keen to bring everyone together to inform, reassure and garner views. I will then take this information back to the Ministers.

“I will be contacting the local schools: Coleraine Academical Institution, Coleraine High School, Coleraine College, Loreto College and DH Christie Primary School; Translink; Transport NI; NEELB and Department of Regional Development officials.

“I will canvass the immediate residential area around Castlerock Road and Ballycairn.

“The meeting however is open to anyone who feels the traffic situation in that area will affect them.”

Last September Education Minister, John O’Dowd, Education Minister, approved the amalgamation of Coleraine Academical Institution and Coleraine High School, and an increase in enrolment at Coleraine College.

The new voluntary grammar school will be called Coleraine Grammar School and will be sited on the grounds of Coleraine Inst.

The Minister also agreed to increase the enrolment at Coleraine College on a phased basis from 2015 up to 900 pupils.

Under the new arrangements Loreto College’s enrolment will increase to a minimum of 1100 pupils.

Residents and parents have already been expressing concern about the potential traffic problems with the inceased number of pupils attending schools in the area.

The meeting will address these issues and gather views.