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Members get sight of final draft of Sion Mills Masterplan

12 March 2020

Members of Derry City and Strabane District Council’s Environment and Regeneration Committee today endorsed the final draft of the Sion Mills Regeneration Masterplan when it was presented at the monthly meeting at the Guildhall today.

The Masterplan is aimed at shaping the village’s redevelopment and regeneration over the next 10-15 years and is based on key priorities for the village moving forward.

Members were informed that the Masterplan includes the findings of a detailed technical analysis and survey to support the preparation of the masterplan as well as the vision, objectives and eight distinctive themes that will align with the proposed actions.

 

Among the eight themes included in the draft are -  A Warm Welcome, Our Streets,  A Hub for Heritage, Home is Where the Heart is, Our Place, The Mighty Mourne, Green & Gorgeous, Community, Business and Tourism.

 

The Masterplan also outlines the specific potential projects under each of the eight themes including their locations and how they relate to other potential projects being proposed within the masterplan. Each of the potential projects has its own unique reference within the masterplan as well as an outline summary of timescales, indicative costs and relevant delivery stakeholders.

 

Members were informed how the draft masterplan is an independent report prepared by consultants commissioned by Council. Its aim is to present a regeneration vision for the sustainable development and growth of the village, through the identification of potential projects which the consultants consider should be explored further and developed – subject to key variables such as availability of funding and stakeholder commitment and buy-in.

 

Members heard how the masterplan also has the potential to influence future funding and project priorities for the village.

 

Tony Monaghan, Regeneration Manager with the Council told members that the themes and list of potential project recommendations contained within the masterplan have been informed by the unique characteristics of Sion Mills village, the technical analysis undertaken by consultants, and importantly the aspirations of the community and statutory stakeholders who engaged during the consultation process.

 

He said: “The masterplan is not an investment strategy nor has it any dedicated financial resourcing to deliver on any of the list of potential projects. Instead, the masterplan represents a key regeneration framework as well as an informed reference point for Council and other stakeholders in the design and delivery of future projects within the village.

 

“The draft masterplan outlines potential projects for a range of locations throughout the village on lands and sites which are in varied ownership. Again, the potential projects are aspirational and will be driven by the individual project promoter’s desire/ability to develop such projects, as well as the availability of resources – both capital and revenue.”

 

The Chairperson of the Environment and Regeneration Committee, Cllr Brian Tierney, welcoming the committee’s endorsement of the report extended his congratulations to everyone involved in the Masterplan.

 

He welcomed the fact that officers will continue to work collaboratively in terms of scoping relevant project proposals within the document and seek to develop these further by means of funding applications and further feasibility analysis. He said it was pivotal that officers also work alongside other stakeholder partners in establishing how Council might facilitate the involvement of third-party project partners.

 

He said: “The masterplan is a key element of the Council’s commitment set out in the Strategic Growth Plan to develop and conserve rural settlements and protecting and promoting our natural built heritage assets.  We are confident this masterplan will become a resource for the entire community in terms of tourism and building the local economy for future generations.”

 

To view the draft Masterplan visit – - https://bit.ly/2TF1jHQ