OVER 900 young people in the Altnagelvin area are served by “poor or below average” play provision, it’s been revealed, as Derry City Council considers progressing a new play park on the former Faughan Valley High School site.
Councillors will on Thursday (October 3) consider giving the greenlight for the new park in Drumahoe and removing old provision at the nearby Mill Path, Faughanview and Faughanview Crescent areas.
According to a report before the local authority’s Environmental Services Committee the area has amongst the worst play provision in Londonderry.
Back in September 2009, the city’s overall play provision was scored on quantity, quality and accessibility, and was given a value score of just 34 per cent.
Investment, however, raised this to 45 per cent by February 2011 and the Council hopes to build new parks and raise the score further to 65 per cent by 2020.
Despite city-wide improvements the Altnagelvin Ward lags far behind the city average at 32 per cent.
Scored by area - Currynierin (38 per cent), Faughan Crescent (24 per cent), Faughan View (30 per cent), Milltown (22 per cent) and Stevenson’s Park (42 per cent) - Altnagelvin comes out with a 31 per cent average.
To address this deficit and provide better provision for 901 local young people, the Council is considering developing a brand new facility at the old Faughan Valley High School site. Although no money has yet been secured for the scheme it will be accurately costed following community engagement.
The Western Education and Library Board (WELB) has already secured outline planning provision and Council has appointed MWA Partnership to design the new facilities.
The proposed Master Plan makes provision for a new 7 aside 3g MUGA, play provision, car parking and changing pavilions with pedestrian access to the Drumahoe Playing Fields.
On Thursday councillors will decide whether or not to pay the £820 planning fee from the Council’s Parks Development Budge for 2013/2014 and whether or not to enters discussions with WELB on the acquisition of lands at the earliest opportunity.