A6 critical for economic development of Derry and must now proceed, say MLAs

The Moneynick Road, a single carriageway section of the A6 between Belfast and Londonderry that is due to be upgraded to dual carriageway
The Moneynick Road, a single carriageway section of the A6 between Belfast and Londonderry that is due to be upgraded to dual carriageway

SDLP MLA Mark H. Durkan says the A6 is critical for the economic development of the North West and has expressed hope that work on an upgrade of the major artery will proceed rapidly in the months ahead.

Speaking after a legal challenge against the road’s procedure through a South Derry wetland was dismissed at the Belfast High Court, he said a new and improved A6 could mark a sea-change in the fortunes of the North West.

“This piece of roads infrastructure is critical to developing our regional economy, particularly in the North West,” he said.

“After years of delays, firm progress must now be made to unlock our potential and deliver investment in communities here.

“There should be no more obstacles to delivering on the promise of the A6 and the key economic benefits that will flow from this investment,” added the MLA.

Sinn Féin leader in the North, Michelle O’Neill, also said the new road had the potential to transform the North West economy.

“The A6 upgrade represents an investment of over £160m and has long been a key priority for Sinn Féin,” she said

“It is a key infrastructural project to help redress regional balance and was significantly moved forward by Sinn Féin Minister Chris Hazzard when preparatory work began last year.”

She added: “When the project is completed in 2019, it will greatly reduce travel times between Derry and Belfast, a development which will be greatly welcomed by the many thousands who use this road daily.”