Area Plan delay a cause for concern

UNANIMOUS support has been forthcoming from councillors for a motion centred on the delay of the Ballymena Area Plan.

Presented to last Monday night’s monthly council meeting by Alderman Maurice Mills, the motion read: “Council is alarmed and perturbed at the extraordinary delay in relation to the publication, development and implementation of the Ballymena Area Plan for period 2001-2016. Due to a lack of any clear progress and direction in relation to this vitally important issue, Council would resolve to write to the Minister responsible for the Department of the Environment in order to seek an updated

position and clear plan of action”.

The Alderman told the meeting: “After 11 years, there has not been one millimetre of progress...this is a vacuum that needs to be filled.”

He added: “It’s crucial we have an updated plan to chart the way ahead. An updated Area Plan is critical to our economic growth.

“Over the last two years, Ballymena has shown its mettle. Now we need an assurance that the Antrim Ballymena and Larne Area Plan will be accorded a top priority,” said Mr Mills who found a seconder for his Motion in Cllr Audrey Wales.

Cllrs O’Loan and Tweed also spoke out in support of the views of Alderman Mills whose Motion went on to receive the unanimous support of the meeting.