THE plans to build Narrow Water Bridge are ‘very much alive’, according to Chairman of the Narrow Water Bridge Community Network, Jim Boylan.
Mr Boylan expressed both ‘dismay and disappointment’ following the news that the Minister for Regional Development Michelle McIlveen, stated that she was unaware that there were any plans to bring the bridge project back to life.
This was in response to a question put by South Down MLA Caitriona Ruane at Stormont, who wished to reiterate Sinn Fein’s support for the Narrow Water Bridge project.
“Had the Minister read the much-heralded ‘Fresh Start Agreement’, she may have noticed that plans to build the bridge at Narrow Water were very much alive,’ stated Warrenpoint businessman, Mr Boylan.
He also added that both the Irish Government and the Executive at Stormont had agreed to review the project for consideration during a meeting of the North South Joint Ministerial Council, scheduled for June, as well as stating that he will be ‘seeking clarification’ from Ms McIlveen regarding a review of the project.
Speaking to The Newry Democrat, Sinn Fein MLA Ms Ruane, said that Narrow Water Bridge would be a ‘key infrastructure project’ and highlighted the positive impact the Peace Bridge has had in Derry.
“I put the question to the Minister because Narrow Water Bridge is a priority project for our party,’ she said.
“I want to reiterate our support for the bridge and that we still believe the bridge is going to be constructed. What we need to do is ensure that between the north, the south and the EU, that the bridge will be constructed and funded.
“Narrow Water Bridge will be a key infrastructure project. It’s a relatively small amount of money for such a key infrastructure project.
“You just need to look at the Peace Bridge in Derry and see the impact that has had on the community.
“The Narrow Water Bridge will impact positively here too because it will be going across Louth and Down. It will have an impact in terms of tourism especially.
“The big message is to make sure that everyone works together to find a way to get funding for Narrow Water Bridge.
19th January 2016