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M1 Slip Roads Plan Back

MLA insists residents must be fully consulted

M1 Slip RoadsA PLAN for new slip roads onto the MI at Dunmurry, which caused uproar in the village in 2000, is back on the table. A consultation was carried out nine years ago on a plan to build new slip roads to allow traffic to go onto the motorway towards Lisburn and off coming from the countrybound direction. However, following concerns from local residents about the effect it would have on local properties and schools, the plan was scrapped.

Now the scheme has been resheduled for 2013/14-2017/18 period, although the exact location has yet been decided. "The need for a scheme providing two additional slip roads for the Ml at Blacks Road, an off-slip for City bound traffic and an on-slip for Country bound traffic, was identified in the Belfast Metropolitan Transport Plan (2015) and outline proposals have been included in the Belfast Metropolitan Area Plan (2015)," confirmed a spokesperson for the Roads Service.

"This scheme has been included in the Investment Strategy for Northern Ireland, Investment Delivery Plan for Roads, and funding is identified as during the period 2013-14 to 2017-18.

"This scheme, similar to all Roads Service schemes, will be subject to the provision of finance, the completion of the necessary statutory processes including public consultation and a successful economic appraisal.

"Design work has not yet commenced for the scheme therefore the location of the slip roads and the details of their linkage into the existing road network is not yet available."

Lagan Valley MLA Paul Butler said it was vital the scheme was given consideration in order to tackle rush hour traffic congestion in Dunmurry.

However, he said it was vital that the views of local residents were given full weight when a potential location for the slip roads is being determined.

"While I welcome the continuing commitment of the Minister to slip roads in Dunmurry this will need to be put out for consultation with the local community," said Mr Butler. "The views of local people would have to be taken into account before any decision on location was taken."

Ulster Star