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Roads article was incorrect and misleading

I refer to an article on unfinished developments, which confuses unadopted roads with unfinished roads in private housing developments (News, May 16).

The article stated that, 'Stormont will not pay the £300m needed to fix the 370 miles of incomplete roads at unfinished housing developments across Northern Ireland' and that homeowners 'will have to meet the cost'.

In fact, this position does not relate to housing development roads, but applies instead to other types of private roads and laneways, which were never planned, or constructed, to a standard that would allow them to become public roads.

Housing development roads are a different situation. The majority of these are designed and built with the intention of being adopted into the public road network. Housing development roads are covered by specific planning and construction legislation, including a requirement for developers to make financial provision for the completion of the roads, usually by taking out a bond that guarantees to pay the costs if the developer cannot complete the agreed work.

When problems arise, the Department of Regional Development (DRD) will negotiate with the developer, or administrators, to seek completion of the roads as per the original agreement.

If that is not successful, DRD arranges for its own contractors to do the necessary work and calls on the bond to pay the costs.

In this way, neither homeowners nor the public purse have to pay for the completion of housing development roads.

EMMA FLYNN DAVIES

DRD Roads Service

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