Minister reaffirms Narrow Water Bridge determination at Newry Meeting

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Wednesday, January 25th, 2017
Community, Politics
Minister For Infrastructure Chris Hazard has reaffirmed his determination to take forward key north south projects such as the Narrow Water Bridge. hazzard14He was speaking at a meeting in Newry last Friday with members of the business community. Hazzard also stated that he has instructed his offficials to take forward planning and development work on the Southern Relief Road. Speaking on the projects the Minister explained, “On becoming the Minister for Infrastructure I set out my strong commitment to take forward key north south projects set out in the Fresh Start Agreement, including the Narrow Water Bridge project and the Ulster Canal. “These are projects which could be truly transformative, unlocking the economic and in particular the tourism potential of their local areas. Over recent months, working with my Ministerial colleagues in the south and key stakeholders, significant progress has been made on both projects.
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Jan End 2017“A meeting is now being arranged with key stakeholders to identify the preferred option for the Narrow Water Bridge project. I am determined this is taken forward as a priority with a view to reaching early agreement and enabling construction to begin by 2019, subject to funding and statutory procedures,” he continued. “I have instructed officials to take forward planning and development work on the Newry Southern Relief Road to allow the introduction of the Statutory Orders by 2019 with the proviso that it would be subject to completion of further community engagement and statutory procedures.”
The Minister’s colleague, Newry & Armagh Sinn Féin MLA Conor Murphy said, “This meeting in Newry was informative and positive. The infrastructure issues discussed are key to the development and economic sustainability of this area. He added, “Whilst concerns were raised about public confidence in the institutions and the current political situation, there was also an acknowledgment that the work being pursued by the Minister and the direction his Department was focusing on would ultimately be of benefit to this region.”
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