The removal of muck to allow the development of a new play park in Ballyarnett has been approved by Derry City and Strabane District Council’s Planning Committee.
Members were advised contaminated land issues arose through the processing of the play park application, which was approved by the committee last September.
The approval means soil excavated from the disused refuse tip adjacent to the existing dog track Ballyarnett Country Park, where the play park is located, can be removed, allowing the development to proceed.
The committee heard how the site of the play park is a former landfill site and as such the excavated spoil is subject to more stringent treatment than if it was simply topsoil which could possibly be utilised in the landscaping of the park
SDLP Councillor, Angela Dobbins, said: “This park has been long-awaited. It’s just a wasteland at the moment.”
Sinn Féin Councillor Tony Hassan said the park would be a boon for, not just Culmore and Ballyarnett, but for the whole city.
He said: “This is welcome news for the thousands of people who live right across the district.
“The Ballyarnett Country Park can provide a wide range of opportunities and act as a catalyst for the regeneration of the area.
“It has been underutilised for many years .And I believe it has nowhere reached its full potential yet, in providing parklands and facilities for residents in the local area and for the city as a whole.
“This announcement that planning approval has been given by the council for a new play park there is a major step forward. The master plan for the Ballyarnett Country park offers a real opportunity to build the foundation’s for the next 5-10 years and put in place something the entire community can be proud of.”