Kennedy unveils plan for city bottleneck

Published Thursday, 06 December 2012
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A key gateway to Belfast's busiest roads is in line for a major transformation to help improve the flow of traffic in and out of the city.

Kennedy unveils plan for city bottleneck
Danny Kennedy has unveiled major plans for the York Street interchange. (© UTV)

Roads Minister Danny Kennedy has unveiled the plans for the York Street interchange, which
cost will cost up to £135m and will take three years to complete.

Under the proposals, links between the Westlink, M2 and M3 will be provided using underpasses underneath the existing Lagan Road and Dargan Rail Bridges and new bridges at York Street and Dock Street.

Speaking at the announcement, following the completion of the Preferred Options Report, the Minister said: "The proposed improvements to this key junction will provide continuous links between three of the busiest roads in Northern Ireland - the M2, M3 and Westlink - which cater for over 100,000 vehicles daily.

"This junction is one of the main gateways to Belfast and provides access to the Port of Belfast as well as serving strategic traffic travelling between the north, south and east of Northern Ireland."

The project is currently in its final stages of development which will be followed by a consultation and potentially a public inquiry.

Funding also needs to be secured for the scheme to go ahead, Minister Kennedy said it should be a priority for the Executive.

"I'm very keen to bring this particular project forward, I believe that there are considerable benefits, it unlocks potentially the travel arrangements for 100,000 vehicle users on a daily basis travelling to and through Belfast and therefore I not only see it as a priority for my department but also an Executive priority," he said.

The information and maps of the proposed scheme will be on display for the public at the Cityside Retail Park on York Street until 17 December 2012.

© UTV News
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3 Comments
southbelfast123 in Belfast wrote (658 days ago):
Great-more millions spent on the roads, such encouragement for us to leave the car at home and onto Translinks hopeless network of buses and trains. How about re-opening a few old rail roads that were ripped out in the 50's or new bus timetables instead, Minister?
g12__ in Bangor wrote (664 days ago):
Brilliant news. Couldn't agree more with G in the previous comment tho, the Dee Street junction is much busier than the York Street interchange. Changing that junction to a free flowing interchange would just move the problem further down the road to Knocknagoney tho. Wouldn't it be great if we had some sort of traffic system that someone had thought through. We could model it on other countries who have already done some thinking and have a motorway network in place. Hang on, motorway network? Now there's an idea!!
G in Belfast wrote (665 days ago):
Great news, but will be wasted if traffic still backed up onto westlink because of the Dee Street lights on Sydenham Bypass.They seem to be more of a bottleneck than york street when heading from westlink to m3 in the evenings.
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