New A5 draft vesting orders by end of year- Minister Kennedy

Minister Danny Kennedy pictured back in 2012 with John White, then Director Roads Service, examinig the plans for the A5 Dual Carriageway.
Minister Danny Kennedy pictured back in 2012 with John White, then Director Roads Service, examinig the plans for the A5 Dual Carriageway.

New draft vesting orders for land to create the A5 dual carriageway will be published by the end of 2015, Minister Danny Kennedy has said.

Mr Kennedy was speaking after concerns were raised over the pace of progress on the A5 project by West Tyrone Sinn Féin MP Pat Doherty.

Mr Doherty this week accused DRD Minister Danny Kennedy of dragging his heels on progressing the A5 Dual Carriageway Project to the next stage, ahead of a meeting with him.

He also called for a definitive timeline for movement on all outstanding issues so that the project can be moved to the construction phase without any further delay.

Mr Doherty said: “Following the outcome of the Judicial Review case into the A5, the fuller environmental assessment and subsequent consultation which Judge Stevens ordered, has been sitting completed since last November, clearing the way for the Minister to move to the next phase- namely the publishing of the draft vesting orders, direction orders and new Environmental statement.

“MLAs from Sinn Féin and other parties have been repeatedly pressing the Minister for a date for this to happen. His response each time was that it would happen within the ‘next few weeks’ when he would submit a paper to his Executive colleagues outlining ‘the way forward with the scheme’.

“Given the Minister’s continued failure to deliver on his repeated promises since the start of the year, and given that no practical reason exists as to why he has still not done so, the Minister must stop dragging his heels and move this forward to the next phase without any further delay.”

Mr Kennedy responded: “It is anticipated that the new Environmental Statement, together with the draft Direction Order and draft Vesting Orders will be published for comment/representations this calendar year. Public exhibitions at local venues will coincide with these publications.”