New road safety measures now operational on Divis Road - Mallon

Date published: 31 March 2021

Infrastructure Minister Nichola Mallon has visited Divis and the Black Mountain today to view new road safety measures which are now in place.

Seven new passing places at intervals along Divis Road will permit visitors to pull into the side of the road, to better manage two way traffic flow and ensure that local residents can freely access their homes during busy periods.

Visiting the site Minister Mallon said:

“I announced my intention to introduce these passing places just a few weeks ago and I am delighted that they have now come into operation.

“Divis and Black Mountain is a beautiful area to exercise and to enjoy nature, however, as visitors we must be respectful of local residents and other road users, including our emergency services, who are entitled to travel along the road without facing obstruction from inconsiderate drivers who have parked their cars along the narrow road side, blocking access routes and causing congestion.

“These passing places should assist with maintaining two way traffic progression and I would appeal to anyone visiting the area to use them for their proper purposes and do not park in them or you could face a fine.  

“My Department has also undertaken improvement works in the vicinity of the National Trust car park entrance including kerbing and carriageway repairs, new road markings and marker posts. Additional signage to warn motorists of pedestrians on approach to the car park entrance will also be erected in the near future.

“Together with the National Trust and PSNI we will keep the traffic situation in the area under review and if necessary I will consider further steps to deal with any obstruction.

“Meanwhile as we approach the Easter break I know many of you will want to get outside for fresh air and exercise but please also remember that facilities such as Divis and the Black Mountain only have limited parking space. I urge everyone to continue to follow the COVID health guidelines and consider arranging their visits to less busy and safer times.”

The National Trust’s Director for Northern Ireland, Heather McLachlan, added:

"We are very pleased to see the completion of these new passing places on Divis Road, and we are grateful to the Minister and Department for progressing this so quickly. Divis and Black Mountain has experienced an increasing number of visitors over the last year, as everyone continues to enjoy the benefits of nature and spending more time outdoors. Having this new infrastructure in place will help ease congestion. We continue to work with our partners including Department for Infrastructure, Belfast City Council, PSNI, Belfast Hills Partnership, elected representatives and local residents to create long-term solutions which ensure special spaces like this can be accessible to everyone. As we approach the busy Easter weekend, we remind everyone to stay local and check our website for the latest information before travelling.”

Superintendent Nigel Henry said:

“Over recent months, officers have responded to multiple reports of congestion and badly parked vehicles which have caused obstructions within the area of Divis and the Black Mountain. While we welcome these new improvements, people visiting the area must still abide by local parking restrictions. Visitors should only park in the available car parks and in a manner which allows the safe and free movement of traffic in the area. This will prevent access issues for local residents and ensure emergency vehicles can access the area if required. Police will continue to patrol the area and will take enforcement action where required.”

Notes to editors: 

  1. The seven passing places are in the form of painted white I lines along the road. 
  2. Pictured at Divis and the Black Mountain as new road safety measures are introduced to assist two way traffic progression during busy periods are Minister Nichola Mallon, the National Trust’s Director for Northern Ireland, Heather McLachlan and PSNI Superintendent Nigel Henry.
  3. All media queries should be directed to the Department for Infrastructure Press Office at:
  4. The Executive Information Service operates an out of hours service for media enquiries only between 1800hrs and 0800hrs Monday to Friday and at weekends and public holidays. The duty press officer can be contacted on 028 9037 8110.
  5. Follow the Department on Twitter @deptinfra and on Facebook @DepartmentforInfrastructure.

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