Dungiven bypass and Ballykelly rail halt discussed

DRD Minister Danny kennedy with the delegation from Limavady on Tuesday. Included are (at back (l-r) Sinn Fein Colr. Tony McCaul, Limavady Council chief executive Liam Flanigan; SDLP Colr. Michael Coyle and DUP Colr. George Robinson. At front are Mayor, SDLp Colr. Gerry Mullan and SDLP Colr. Orla Beattie. (1608sj660
DRD Minister Danny kennedy with the delegation from Limavady on Tuesday. Included are (at back (l-r) Sinn Fein Colr. Tony McCaul, Limavady Council chief executive Liam Flanigan; SDLP Colr. Michael Coyle and DUP Colr. George Robinson. At front are Mayor, SDLp Colr. Gerry Mullan and SDLP Colr. Orla Beattie. (1608sj660
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The push for key pieces of infrastructure in the Roe Valley area travelled to Belfast this week where a cross party delegation from Limavady Council told Transport Minister Danny Kennedy of their urgency.

Among the issues discussed at the Tuesday meeting were the Dungiven bypass and the potential for a railway halt at Ballykelly.

The minister met with SDLP councillors Gerry Mullan, Orla Beattie and Michael Coyle; Sinn Fein Colr. Tony McCaul; DUP Colr. George Robinson and Council Chief Executive, Liam Flanigan.

Speaking about the A6 scheme and the Dungiven bypass, the minister said he was was able to “restate my belief that there is a real need for this important scheme. The Inspector’s Report is currently being considered in detail by my officials and I expect it on my desk in the autumn”.

The minister said he had no difficulty in decoupling the Dungiven bypass section “if necessary, however, the key focus is on ensuring that all issues raised in the Inspector’s Report are addressed and that the necessary finance is in place. Assuming all factors are in the scheme’s favour, the earliest possibility for on-site construction is in 2015/16.”

Regarding calls for a railway halt at Ballykelly, the Minister said he “recognised the benefits it could bring, especially in light of the relocation of the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development Headquarters to Ballykelly in the coming years”.

Road improvement schemes on the Seacoast Road and a request for a climbing lane on the A37 Gortcorbies were also discussed.

“In relation to the planned roadworks on the Downhill Road,” said the minister, “we did postpone this necessary work until September and while we will look at all options for the timing of the work we are obligated to consider the costs and ensure there is value for money.”

(See Page 16 for reaction from delegates)