It follows the unanimous backing by Derry City and Strabane District Council’s Planning Committee.
A wide range of new facilities are planned for the new St. Mary’s Youth Centre on Fanad Drive.
The existing youth club and community hall will be demolished.
They will be replaced with a new premises consisting of indoor and outdoor facilities and car parking.
Local councillors on the Planning Committee were told at their monthly meeting in Strabane on Wednesday by a planning officer that the current facilities were “in a fairly bad state of repair.”
The officer said the plans included a 3G Multi-Use Games Area and landscaping, while the centre itself consisted of a sports hall, fitness suite, climbing wall, boxing and dance area, multi-purpose area, an office and a facility for classes. Access to the site will be via a new access point from Fanad Drive close to the current entrance.
Among the conditions attached to the approval by Planners are that within 24 hours prior to demolition, the existing buildings on the site shall be checked for bat presence by an ecologist and that all demolition works be monitored by an ecologist, although it has already been established that there is minimal potential for bat roosting.
While welcoming the plans for St. Mary’s , Sinn Fein Councillor Patricia Logue said she felt this particular condition was “excessive” and would be an additional cost to the youth club.
She proposed that the council write to the authorities to ensure that survey work already conducted are taken into account.
SDLP Councillor Angela Dobbins endorsed this suggestion.
However, the planning officer said that this was a standard condition.Tags: