Sinn Féin Councillor Caoimhe McKnight has welcomed the nomination of a consultant team to undertake and manage the technical design and construction of new Templemore and Strabane leisure centres.
Derry & Strabane Council yesterday confirmed that the plans for the £50m investment in the new leisure centres were being progressed.
Speaking to the ‘Journal’ Colr Caoimhe McKnight said: “Sinn Féin have been lobbying council for a number of years now to have an extensive redevelopment and upgrading of the Templemore Sports Complex.
“I am delighted that Derry City and Strabane District Council has nominated a consultant team to undertake and manage the technical design and construction of Templemore and Strabane Leisure Facilities Projects.
“Currently the overall cost to complete the construction of the facilities is estimated to be in the region of £50m.
“Over the next few years I believe that we will see one of the most extensive developments at the complex that has been witnessed in this city.”
A spokesperson for Derry City and Strabane District Council meanwhile, commented: “Council is at an advanced stage in the procurement of the design team to progress with delivery of the Templemore and Strabane strategic leisure facilities – and in accordance with Public Procurement Regulations is unable to comment any further at this time.
“Council hopes to be in a position to conclude the process shortly and will make details available at that time.”
Jonathan Gray, project manager with the Strategic Investment Board, who is assisting the council with a new sports and leisure strategy, confirmed back in July that the appointment of a design team to advance the replacements for Templemore and Riversdale Sports Complex was under way.
He said at the time that existing local leisure and health and fitness facilities were being examined, while a review of the quality of playing pitches and changing facilities was also being undertaken.
Mr Gray said that data had shown that around 65 per cent of local people are currently not active. “That is where the opportunity is to be able to drive that participation and make a difference,” he said.