09/05/2006

Roads Service to spend £6M on improvements

The Roads Service is to invest £4 million into the Armagh district and £2 million in the Newtownabbey area over the next twelve months, it has been revealed today.

Schemes to be taken forward around Armagh include improvements to the Madden Row, Keady road junction; Newtownhamilton/Keady Road junction and at Blacks Lane, Tandragee; and provision of right turning lanes at Rock Road and Brootally crossroads, Armagh.

Speaking in Armagh, Divisional Roads Manager John White said: “Roads Service is making every effort to keep disruption to a minimum by completing as many schemes as possible during the summer months when there is generally less traffic. However, most road users appreciate that road improvements can’t be done without some disruption to traffic."

He reminded local councillors that, following the Review of Public Administration, the responsibility for local roads is expected to transfer to seven new local authorities in Spring 2009.

The local road network consists of all roads except motorways and trunk roads and comprises about 23,700 km of the 25,000 km of public roads throughout Northern Ireland.

The Roads Service is currently assessing the implications of this decision and identifying how it can help to facilitate the smooth transfer of responsibilities.

The Department for Regional Development will be taking over the PSNI’s current responsibilities for parking enforcement in Autumn 2006.

At a separate meeting in Newtonabbey, Deputy Divisional Roads Manager Tom McCourt met with representative from the District Council to announce that a capital and maintenance investment totalling over £2 million is also planned for Newtownabbey in the year ahead.

Schemes which will be taken forward include provision of footways and cycle ways on Ballyclare Road, Doagh and the Jordanstown Road, as well as junction improvements at Monkstown Road / Old Carrick Road and Carntall Road / Reahill Road / Ballyearl Road.

Over the last three years, a total of some £735 million has been spent on developing and maintaining the road network in Northern Ireland.

(EF)

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