Infrastructure Minister John O’Dowd has today published the Placemaking and Active Travel Review (PATR) report for the York Street Interchange project.
The PATR report identifies a number of options to enhance placemaking and improve active travel provision around the area of the York Street Interchange project.
Publishing the report today Minister O’Dowd said:
“Publication of this Placemaking and Active Travel Review report once again highlights my commitment to see the York Street Interchange project delivered.
“This Strategic Road Improvement scheme will provide a grade separated interchange to replace the existing at-grade signal controlled junction of the A12 Westlink, M2 and M3 alleviating traffic congestion in the area. It is also significant to our future economic and societal wellbeing.
“In taking the project forward it is important to take account of our changing environment and aim to maximise the social, economic and environmental benefits of the scheme and its contribution to the future development of Belfast. That is why in the summer of 2020 an Independent Assurance Review of the project was commissioned to determine the project’s ability to deliver better connectivity, improve health and wellbeing, tackle the climate crisis and to ensure it is future proofed.
“This latest PATR addresses some of the recommendations from that review while incorporating further work undertaken particularly around placemaking.
“I see the publication of this report as the crucial next step in the York Street Interchange project. It will allow public debate and engagement. Not everyone will agree with the three shortlisted options in the report. However, I would encourage people, elected representatives and community organisations, particularly in the areas most affected, to engage with my officials as they work to refine those options and explore any implementation issues. This stakeholder engagement will help to deliver for communities, connectivity and the wider living places agenda.”
The report is available at: York Street Interchange - Overview
Notes to editors:
- The York Street Interchange project is a Strategic Road Improvement scheme that will provide a fully grade separated interchange to replace the existing at-grade signal controlled junction of the A12 Westlink, M2 and M3.
- The scheme went through Public Inquiry in 2015 and procurement in 2016. However, the competition was subject to legal challenge, resulting in termination of the competition in 2019.
- In the summer of 2020, an Independent Assurance Review of the project was commissioned to determine the project’s ability to deliver better connectivity, improve health and wellbeing, tackle the climate crisis and to ensure it is future proofed.
- The Independent Assurance Review had six recommendations which were accepted and published in March 2021. To aid addressing some of the recommendations, further work was commissioned, particularly around placemaking and to maximise ambition in terms of what can be delivered for communities, connectivity and the wider living places agenda.
- As a result, a Placemaking and Active Travel Review hasm been completed following further engagement with local stakeholders.
- A timescale for the future procurement and construction of the project is dependent upon a number of factors, including the completion of any follow up work resulting from the PATR and the availability of funding.
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