Lobbying continues for Moneymore bypass as traffic tailbacks continue

Wednesday, 1 August 2018

TALKS continue over plans to introduce a bypass to ease the traffic tailbacks in the centre of Moneymore which have blighted the village for nearly two years.
A meeting was held between Moneymore Heritage Trust and the Department of Infrastructure to look at ways to combat the congestion issue.
Since the opening of the Magherafelt bypass almost two years ago, the village has turned into a bottleneck during peak times, which led to Ulster Unionist Councillor George Shiels brokering a meeting between the parties.
Speaking after the meeting, Cllr Shiels said: "Mr Tom Reid, the Department of Infrastructure's Director of Transport Strategy has overall responsibility for the Transport Plans Programme which will inform future Ministerial priorities when full consideration would be given to schemes such as the Moneymore bypass.
“Moneymore is merely one of a suit of plans and should be well placed within the Local Transportation Strategy wich the department is working on in partnership witht he Mid-Ulster District Council.
“Mr Reid was left in no doubts of the problems faced daily by Moneymore residents and commuters, especially since the provision of the Magherafelt bypass which has led to an increased volume of traffic at key times in Moneymore," continued the Magherafelt Councillor.
Members of the Heritage Trust were said to be "pleasantry surprised" by the level of understanding by the Director and his grasp of the extent of the problem facing the village.
Mr Reid also told the Trust he would keep a "line of communication open" in order to keep them updated with any potential developments.
Councillor Sheils concluded: "Personally I was very pleased with the ambience of the meeting and whilst no promises or guarantees were given, I came away with a feeling of hope that we had at least turned a corner."
The wait for a bypass in the village has been a long time coming, with the first proposal coming over 40 years ago. But in November 2016, former Roads Minister Chris Hazzard said a bypass was not considered as "high priority" as the volume of traffic travelling through the village is not "excessive".



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