Belfast Telegraph

Caution urged over plans to shut recycling site

By Brendan McDaid

Among the more controversial proposals outlined yesterday was getting rid of the Brandywell recycling and amenity site.

Local councillors, however, cautioned that when the facility was closed several years ago it caused outrage and sparked protests among local people.

Several said that the facilities would have to be relocated elsewhere within the area if they were being removed from beside the Brandywell stadium.

The Lecky Road flyover could also go under the plans, to be replaced with a more attractive alternative traffic plan.

A new campervan site along the river is to be examined, along with new allotments for residents in the Southway area.

Consultant James Hennessey said the vacant Ben Sherman shirt factory at the Fountain/Bishop Street area interface could be used for cross-community projects and training and skills.

He added: “Is there scope to look at the potential development at the interface — retaining the wall in its location but looking at how it could be used more effectively?”

He also suggested changes to the Long Tower Court side of the interface over the long term in a bid to stimulate more activity and the expansion of the Iona Business Park.

The installation of “some really fantastic architecture and public art” and play facilities throughout the area was advocated by Mr Hennessey. Lumen Christi College, he added, was open to the idea of a small woodland park to the rear of the school and a project centred around the historic windmill in the school grounds.

Mr Hennessey said the authors of the plan were now keen to get local people’s views and then work out how projects would be categorised as short, medium and long-term.

He said it was envisaged that the final plan would be brought back before the council in the spring.

Oonagh McGillion, Derry City Council’s director of development, said the proposals had generated excitement, with the masterplan being one of the key aspects of the city’s regeneration plan.

Welcoming the proposals, Sinn Fein councillor Kevin Campbell said: “This plan covers a massive geographical area, which to be honest has seen very little regeneration, practically none, over the last 40 years.”

DUP councillor Drew Thompson, however, expressed dissatisfaction that there were not more regeneration plans for the predominantly unionist Fountain area.

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