Social homes allocation as masterplan progresses

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The first batch of new social homes in Top of The Hill, will be allocated in October, as work continues on a host of other community developments in the Waterside area.

Apex has now confirmed that Phase One of the development will be allocated to people on the housing waiting list in six stages starting in mid-October and ending in late January/ early February 2019.

This phase will comprise 78 housing units, with 38 three-person, two bedroom houses; 20 five person, three bedroom houses; 12 two-person, one bedroom apartments; three complex needs bungalows; one complex needs house and four six person, four bedroom houses.

Phase Two will comprise 16 units but a start date for this is as yet unconfirmed.

Meanwhile, Derry City & Strabane District Council has provided an update on some of the other key projects under way in the area. Outline plans for the 40-acres Corrody Park site and 12-acres plot at the former Immaculate Conception College in the Waterside were unveiled back in 2014, with extensive input from council and various statutory and community sector bodies as well as parish officials and political representatives.

Full planning permission for the erection of a new split level Community Centre on the former Immaculate Conception College site on Trench Road was approved in March 2018, to include office space for training; meeting and consultation rooms; childcare facilities; youth facilities and a social hall.

A council spokesperson said: “The proposed new centre represents a major boost to the community in the Top of the Hill area by providing much needed facilities to sustain existing programmes and allow the opportunity to promote community growth.

“ This project forms part of council’s commitment set out in its Strategic Growth Plan to create sustainable and accessible community facilities for residents across the city and district.”

Meanwhile, works are currently underway on the redeveloped sports pitches and facilities, including a new grass floodlit GAA football pitch.

The facilities will provide a permanent home for the Waterside’s only GAA club, Na Piarsaigh Doire Trasna.

“The beginning of works on the Corrody Road site continues council’s commitment in the Strategic Growth Plan to deliver an extensive programme of capital and playing pitch development throughout the City & District – and the improved leisure facilities will play a key role in encouraging more citizens to be active and help them reap the health benefits that exercise brings,” the council spokesperson said.

“The site of the playing pitch development will measure 3.4 hectares and a new access will be developed to it, via Corrody Road.”

The proposal to develop a multi-code sports facility at the former Clondermot High School site received unanimous approval in April 2017.

Work is currently ongoing on the project to create a full-size grass pitch for soccer, rugby and gaelic games, a 3G synthetic soccer pitch, tennis courts and synthetic wickets with netting and flood lighting to allow for outdoor cricket practise during the winter.

A modern changing pavilion, incorporating six team changing rooms, separate accessible male and female changing rooms and a multi-purpose room to hold community events, alongside ancillary staff and support facilities, are also set to be developed at the old school.

“Once completed, the state of the art facility will enhance community relations and be used by both communities in the Irish Street and Top of the Hill areas.

“It will bring the two communities together and create a truly shared space,” the council spokesperson added.