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Albert Basin Park Campaigns Community Constituency Council Government Newry Newry and Armagh NMD Council South Down Stormont

Alliance Motion Seeks Funding for Albert Basin Park and Other Active Travel Projects 

Newry, Mourne and Down Council will debate a motion that calls for an officer to be made responsible for identifying funding for cross-border tourism and active travel projects. 

The motion, brought forward by Alliance Councillor Cadogan Enright, specifically names a number of projects the council officer will seek funding for through the Shared Island Fund. These include the Albert Basin Park project, an Omeath Road cycle expressway, and connective cycle lanes and greenways between Newry city centre and Rostrevor as part of restoring the Ulster Way across the Mournes and Downpatrick.

The Shared Island Fund was announced in 2021 by the Irish Government, with €500m in capital funding available between 2021-25, ring-fenced for investment in collaborative North/South projects. 

Cadogan Enright said “This motion is important in committing our Council to building on cross-border tourism opportunities and active travel projects. While projects like the Albert Basin Park have been talked about for years, progress has been slow. Alliance representatives want to see these plans become a reality, hence why we have proposed the Council appoint an officer to seek the needed funding for them through the Shared Island Fund.”

He continued “Newry, Mourne and Down are in the ideal position to tap into this fund and build world-class active travel infrastructure, which will not only attract tourism but enable our constituents to lead healthier, more sustainable lives.”

South Down MLA, Patrick Brown, noted “I commend our Alliance Councillors for bringing this motion forward. It recognises what a huge opportunity we have in Newry, Mourne and Down given the beauty of our natural environment. It is up to the Council to deliver on projects that improve people’s lives, and this motion would commit them to taking real action. 

Brown continued “The Council recently failed to include the Albert Basin Park in their applications to the Levelling Up Fund, despite there being a £14 million shortfall and the local community clearly wanting and deserving a park of this scale. This motion ensures the Council will seek funding elsewhere, given the missed opportunity. It also brings focus onto cycle and walk-ways, such as sections of the Ulster Way, which are lacking investment, despite the tourism potential and the cultural significance being massive. I want to see our Council confidently and transparently, going after funding opportunities and this is an encouragement to do so.”

**ENDS**

The tabled Motion in full:

‘This council recognises the opportunity presented by cross-border tourism and the importance of active travel for healthier, more sustainable lifestyles. It also recognises the key role that projects such as the Narrow Water Bridge and Albert Basin Park can play in supporting this. Council will formally write to the Southern Government’s Shared Island Unit expressing their interest in submitting a formal application for a number of projects which will support cross border tourism and active travel in the area. This will specifically include applications for the remainder of funding for the Albert Basin Park project, an Omeath Road cycle expressway, and connective cycle lanes and greenways between Newry city centre and Rostrevor as part of restoring the Ulster Way. Council will also, within a month of this motion being agreed, appoint an officer responsible for actioning this motion’

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