Where will Derry's Foyle Metro, Goldliner and Ulsterbus services depart from during major Foyle Street waterworks?

Translink has confirmed details of temporary arrangements for bus stops being put in place during sewage upgrade works which will result in parts of Foyle Street being closed to traffic in phases over the course of the next year.
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While no start date for the works has been confirmed, the new temporary bus stop arrangements will come into effect once the £4.2m NI Water sewage and water infrastructure upgrade works in the heart of the city centre commence. It emerged this week that this could be within weeks.

Foyle Street car park will be closed for at least 72 weeks during the works.

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During this time, the car park will instead be used for Ulsterbus services, including buses servicing some rural routes, with the exception of Goldliner.

Foyle Street will be closed for much of this year as NI Water undertake phased sewage and water infrastructure upgrades.Foyle Street will be closed for much of this year as NI Water undertake phased sewage and water infrastructure upgrades.
Foyle Street will be closed for much of this year as NI Water undertake phased sewage and water infrastructure upgrades.

For those travelling by bus around Derry city, Translink has confirmed to the Journal that the Foyle Metro bus stops will be moving from along Foyle Street to Foyle Street Bus Station, which will remain open throughout the works.

Goldliner services will also continue to operate from Foyle Street bus station.

Meanwhile pedestrian access along Foyle Street is expected to be maintained and local businesses and services along Foyle Street will also be open and accessible throughout the works.

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The temporary closure of the Council-run car park next to the Peace Park and opposite the Guildhall was raised at the April meeting of Derry City & Strabane District Council’s Governance and Strategic Planning meeting on Tuesday last.

The central bus station in Derry will remain open during the works.The central bus station in Derry will remain open during the works.
The central bus station in Derry will remain open during the works.

Director of Business and Culture, Stephen Gillespie, warned members that the closure would now be for at least 72 weeks, or around one year and five months.

He said: “The works will be starting shortly with NI Water and, we have to make sure members approve anything in relation to land.

“NI Water want to take over it for a period of 72 weeks, and to do that we have to enter into a tripartite agreement; DfC have to grant NI Water (permission), but they have to have our approval.

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“NI Water has confirmed they need it for a 72-week period but, like all building work, it could run on."

He added: “I’m aware NI Water are very keen to get moving with the actual works, hence the need to bring it to Council today instead of at Full Council.”

The plans for the upgrade to the ‘Victorian’ type waste and storm water infrastructure on Foyle Street first came to public attention last October when NI Water delivered a presentation to the Council.

It was detailed at the time how the major project could remove a major impediment to plans for a Whiskey Emporium in the heart of Derry city centre as well as other future planning developments.

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Robert McLean, NI Water senior project manager in capital delivery, said that the sewage system along Foyle Street is around 100 years old.

It consisted, he said, of one combined foul and storm, egg-shaped sewer system, which was, he said, no longer normal and would have been “built in the Victorian ages”.

Speaking back in October, he said that at present the system requires regular cleaning due to silting and there was a need to separate the storm flow. New connections onto this sewer system cannot be accepted due to its capacity, and the risk of sewage overflowing and impacting homes, businesses and the environment in the Foyle Street area, he said.

A 100-year-old ductile iron watermain on Foyle Street also needs to be replaced, and it is proposed to upgrade this at the same time as part of the £4.2m works.

Elected representatives were told that the upgrade will improve discharge into the River Foyle, accommodate short-term infrastructure developments in the local area while NI Water is also committed to facilitating future upgrades.

“Storm separation and planning restraints are two of the main drivers behind this scheme,” Mr McLean said. “Most people will be aware in the city that the existing Culmore Wastewater Treatment works is currently operating at capacity and that is resulting in curtailment of new foul connections.”

He said that capacity issues has resulted in NI Water ‘unfortunately returning negative responses’ to planning applications and that this was subject to further investigations. He said an example of this was proposals for a whiskey emporium including a shop, exhibition space, tasting experience, bar, function room and food facilities in the heart of the city centre along 7- 17 Foyle Street.

Mr McLean said: “Our proposal with the storm separation will remove a significant volume of storm water from the existing wastewater network and this will have a benefit to such applications as this one here for the whiskey distillery."

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