MEMBERS of Derry City and Strabane District Council’s Planning Committee have approved plans for the construction of a new community facility within St Columb’s Park.
The £2.3m project got the go ahead from members who welcomed the move to the next stage in the wider development of the park area.
The project will include a single ancillary building unit for community use for St Columb’s Park House, as well as pathways, landscaping, a new formal garden and entrance gates.
Speaking after the meeting, Chair of the Planning Committee, Councillor Warren Robinson, said it would provide a vital community resource for the Waterside area.
“I am delighted to see the application for this project met with the approval of the Planning Committee,” he declared.
“St Columb’s Park is a fantastic shared space in the Waterside area and this new building will further facilitate the excellent work that goes on with the support of St Columb’s Park House.
“This is the result of partnership working at its best and I want to thank both St Columb’s Park House and the Acorn Fund for their support of this project.
“The park continues to grow and develop and I am delighted to see us move to the next phase in the regeneration plans as they come to fruition.”
Significant regeneration work has been ongoing at St Columb’s Park led by Derry City and Strabane District Council in partnership with St Columb’s Park House and the Acorn Fund.
The project is listed as a priority capital project in the Strategic Growth Plan for the City and District, and is aligned to Council’s Parks Management and Development programme, which has already resulted in the delivery of a wide network of new play areas and community facilities across the City and District.
Funding options and a business case for the project are currently in the process of development and work will begin on site next year.
Welcoming the decision Operations Manager with Columb’s Park House, Sharon Doherty, said:
“St Columb’s Park House is a Peace Centre located in the heart of the City’s largest urban park, and we’re delighted to be part of these new and exciting developments that will connect and benefit our City and Communities for the future.”
Shauna Kelpie, Programme Manager for the Acorn Fund, said the work would enhance the area as a popular shared community space and provide opportunities for people to engage with the natural environment in a new and fun way.