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Basin up to future

The possibility of phased development of the Albert Basin site including a Marine Development on the upper part of the site is to be investigated by council officials. During recent on site discussions it was also agreed that council officials should investigated funding opportunities for such a development and report back to the council. The Department of Social Development meanwhile has agreed to consider revisiting and funding a feasibility study on the Newry River Weir taking into account additional factors such as the tourism impact as well as flooding impact. Funding opportunities on the site’s future development may also be explored as part of ongoing discussions with the Department of Finance and Personnel. The name in this instance is to submit a bid for feasibility monies to the European Investment Bank Core City Regional Investment Initiative which is for the development of cities outside the Belfast area. It has also been decided that buildings on the site will be demolished with tender set to be issued in such a way as to ensure that the cost of demolition takes into account the salvageable value of materials within it such as metal. As such contractors bidding for the job will be asked to provide costs for two options the first being the undertaking of all demolition work – including removal of asbestos – and disposal of all demolition material; the second being all demolition works with responsibility for setting aside  on site salvageable material such as metal and rubble. The salvageable material will be disposed of by the council all remaining demolition material to be disposed of by contractor. A request for Newry Maritime Association to work on developing a pedestrian walkway through the Albert Basin site was also considered. The volunteers are seeking approval to begin work cutting back foliage and other such obstacles to the opening of a walkway. However after some discussion it was decided that any such scheme could only take place after the derelict buildings have been demolished and the site secured. It was agreed that one initial work has been completed council will work with Inland Waterways to open a pedestrian walkway through the site. It was also agreed that to facilitate this council will retain its current seasonal gardening staff when their contract is due to cease at the end of the summer period. In the interim council’s Rights of Way Officer Catherine Murphy will investigate potential funding routes for the project.


Newry Democrat

4th June 2013