05/12/2018

A5 Development Scheme Must Progress Immediately- SDLP

An SDLP MLA has called for the A5 development scheme to progress immediately, following the Department of Infrastructure's (DOI) confirmation that it will commence in late 2019.

The first phase of the project will see a 15km stretch of road upgraded to a dual carriageway between New Buildings on the outskirts of L'Derry, and Strabane.

Up until now, the development has been stalled for over a decade due to legal challenges.

SDLP MLA for west Tyrone Daniel McCrossan expressed his concern at the lack of progress as the busy route has been the site of many fatal road collisions in recent years.

He said: "It is reprehensible that this critical piece of infrastructure has still not been delivered to the people of the West and North West of this province. Today's comments are welcome but it is a travesty we've got to this position in the first place.
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"The West and North West of this province deserve this road that will prevent death, increase investment and grow connectivity. This scheme has generated widespread support from the public and businesses alike. There can be no more kicking the can down the road.

Mr McCrossan added: "I am glad the Department have listened to my calls to progress the scheme under new civil servant powers. I hope this is done immediately and a consultation process is now imminent."

Sinn Fein MP Órfhlaith Begley welcomed the news that the DoI will submit a new application for the road.

She said: "This groundbreaking project will undoubtedly improve connectivity across the north west and create direct links to Dublin. 

"Recent fatalities on the A5 have once again reflected the need for enhanced infrastructure to improve road safety on one of the most dangerous roads in Ireland.

"Sinn Fein are committed to achieving social development and the economic regeneration of the north west and the A5 is key to delivering this."



(JG)

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