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Elected members updated on ambitious capital development plan

03 July 2018

Elected members on Derry City and Strabane District Council’s Strategic Governance Committee have received an update on the progress of £40.09m worth of fully funded capital investment projects currently being undertaken by Council.

The extensive list of projects spanning the whole Council area includes the upgrading of the Melvin Arena in Strabane, the Magheramason and Newtownstewart Play Projects and new Community Centres in Top of the Hill, Galliagh and Shantallow.

Members today approved the allocation of £1.88m funds to continue the projects, which was described as a significant statement of intent to build on the £117m already invested in capital development since the inception of the new Council.

Council’s Lead Finance Officer, Alfie Dallas, explained that the allocation was made possible by Council’s Efficiency Plan which has realised recurrent savings of over £2m to date.

He also reminded members that it was imperative that other funders provide match funding to ensure their ambitious Capital Projects plans could become a reality.

“The completed and in progress projects to date represent a significant investment by the new Council in capital projects across the City and District,” he said.

“The total value of these projects is almost £77m, of which £43.64m has been secured from external sources, representing significant leverage on Council investment. Subject to funding, Council is progressing a range of strategic projects which will require significant investment including strategic leisure projects at Templemore and Strabane, the Canal Basin, Foyle Street and Queen’s Quay riverside regeneration projects,” he added.

“Council has already allocated a capital sum of £2.447m to progress the strategic leisure projects to detailed business case and design stages. A significant priority for Council in the upcoming rates will be to grow this fund and explore all potential avenues of funding to progress these projects which are already included as part of Council’s City Growth Deal proposals.”

Welcoming the report, Chairperson of the Governance and Strategic Planning Committee, Cllr Gus Hastings, said it demonstrated Council’s commitment to pursuing an ambitious capital development strategy set out in the Strategic Growth Plan.

“The capital investment projects currently being progressed by Council will not only enhance the City and District’s physical and virtual connectivity, but will provide new opportunities to develop skills, improve wellbeing, increase tourism and provide opportunity for economic opportunity.

“Officers are working closely with Central Government Departments around growth and stimulus funding to ensure maximum leverage for Council’s capital investment that will allow the Council to deliver on its commitment for further investment, regeneration, and provide support to sustain and create employment opportunities.”