Barracks proposals on display at Braid

Minister for Communities Paul Givan with North Antrim DUP assemblyman Paul Frew, Mid & East Antrim Mayor, Audrey Wales and Council Chief Executive, Anne Donaghy at St. Patrick's Barracks. (Submitted image)
Minister for Communities Paul Givan with North Antrim DUP assemblyman Paul Frew, Mid & East Antrim Mayor, Audrey Wales and Council Chief Executive, Anne Donaghy at St. Patrick's Barracks. (Submitted image)

Ballymena people have been urged to have their say on new developpment proposals for the St. Patrick’s Barracks site.

Communities Minister, Paul Givan MLA was in the town last week to launch a public consultation on the proposed uses for the former military training base.

The proposals set out in the development plan will provide for a diverse range of uses including mixed tenure housing, leisure and recreational areas, civic and office space and facilities for community enterprise and knowledge industries.

Speaking at The Braid centre, where the plans are on display, he said: “These proposals aim to breathe new life into this site through a varied mix of uses.

“The location of the site is quite close to the town centre so it is important our plans make best use of it and its potential to bring economic, social and cultural benefits to the whole area. The plan also takes account of travel linkages with provision for pedestrians and cycle users and proposed new transport roads which will open up wider access and the potential for future development opportunities.This consultation on the plans is an opportunity for all to shape this place and help us make best use of what is a very valuable resource for Ballymena. I urge anyone with an interest to view the proposals and share your views.”

The Mayor of Mid and East Antrim Borough, Councillor Audrey Wales MBE said: “I am very excited about the development of this iconic site in Ballymena and see it as a flagship project within the whole Borough.

“The St Patrick’s Barracks proposals are aimed at not only encouraging enterprise but also at making the maximum use of this large site’s close proximity to the town centre and main commercial area.

“I urge everyone to take the time to examine the proposals and to make known their views through this important consultation exercise.”

The regeneration proposals will be on public display at The Braid, Ballymena Town Hall, Museum & Arts Centre, throughout the public consultation period from 28 November 2016 – 4 March 2017. Proposals can also be viewed online at www.communities-ni.gov.uk/stpatricks-barracks and will be displayed at other Ballymena venues which will be announced shortly.

Comments on the proposals can also be made online at www.communities-ni.gov.uk/stpatricks-barracks, by emailing StPatricks.BarracksProject@communities-ni.gov.uk or by writing to: St Patrick’s Barracks project, RDO Northern Division, County Hall, Ballymena, BT42 1QG

The decision to close the barracks by the Ministry of Defence in 2006 was followed by a subsequent gifting of the site to the NI Executive in 2011. It was subsequently acquired in September 2015 by the legacy Department to the Department for Communities.

The Development plan was prepared by The Paul Hogarth Company, urban design and planning consultants appointed by the Department.