PLANS for the regeneration of the public realm space in Strabane were given the final green light today as Derry City and Strabane District Council’s Planning Committee granted full planning permission for the scheme.
The plans will see significant improvements to a number of roads in the town centre, and the creation of a new public space in Abercorn Square.
They will also result in a realignment of the traffic flows and improvements to a number of junctions and parking areas in and around the town centre area.
Planning Committee members accepted the recommendation of planning officers to approve the works, which will have a major positive impact on the town, particularly for local businesses.
The plans aim to address a number of issues including alleviating traffic congestion, and restoring character and identity to the town centre through high quality public realm design and improved infrastructure.
Mayor of Derry City and Strabane District, Councillor Michaela Boyle, welcomed the news saying: “I am delighted to see these transformative plans for Strabane fully approved today and I want to acknowledge all the effort that has gone into reaching this stage of the process.
“There has been a legacy of underinvestment in Strabane Town Centre and I am so pleased to see Council addressing many of the challenges that have restricted economic growth and development by investing significantly in the area.
“This is an exciting time for Strabane, and as a native of the town I am very much looking forward to seeing the full delivery of these plans and the additional development projects which are also in the pipeline.
“These include the Melvin Arena stand and 3G pitch, the green space at Lisnafin, the Strabane/Lifford phase of the North West Greenway Project and the Canal Basin Regeneration Project, to name but a few.”
Speaking after the meeting, Chair of the Planning Committee, Councillor Christopher Jackson, said he looked forward to seeing work commencing in the area.
“The people of Strabane will be extremely pleased to see these plans move now to the next stage and work actually beginning on site as soon as possible.
“While it may cause some disruption in the town centre while the work is underway there is no doubting the positive impact the changes will have on the town.
“The work shows the commitment of Council to delivering change for Strabane, and transforming the town centre into a thriving and bustling hub for business and culture.
“In recent weeks we also received confirmation of €8.96m in EU Peace IV funding for the Riverine project which will see the development of the cross border area between Strabane and Donegal.
“I look forward to the delivery these major projects which will act as catalysts in achieving the transformation of Strabane town and the outcomes set out in the Strategic Growth Plan for Derry and Strabane.”
The plans are available to view at the NI Planning Portal www.planningni.gov.uk Ref No: LA11/2018/0015/F