Councillor Mickey Cooper said “The Glen and lower Rosemount areas of Derry are communities which has long suffered from a lack of community infrastructure. It has also long suffered from a lack of modern social housing to accommodate the growing number of people on waiting lists seeking to move into the area.
“Over the past five years these two factors were the motivation for the Glen Development Initiative (GDI) to work with the Council and other statutory partners to develop a new community centre for the area combined with over 100 new homes to help reduce waiting lists. Funding was secured from all partners and excitement was building within the area about the new project.
“The plans received a setback a few months ago but as councillor for the area I am determined that the opportunity is not lost to develop new community facilities in the area.
“This is why we have been working with the GDI and Derry City and Strabane District Council officers in the past few months to revive plans for a new build community centre within the footprint of the Glenview area. Our vision for the new centre incorporates facilities for local families, our younger residents, leisure and training facilities for our local youth and ample space to host events for our older residents and wider community.
“On this basis I am delighted that proposals are due to come before councils Governance and Strategic Planning community this week recommending that capital development funding is ring fenced for a new community facility. This will allow the GDI to work with other statutory partners to secure further financial support which we hope will ultimately see the development of the new facility within the next three years.
“The GDI and I have also met with council officials to begin the process of mapping out a potential new site for the proposed facility which means we will hopefully have some outline designs ready by early New Year. As work progresses the GDI will also host community consultation events to allow local residents to provide their own views on the proposed design of the new build and its proposed facilities.
“Since Sinn Féin became the largest party on Derry Strabane District council in 2014 we have pushed the council to develop new build community facilities right across the city and district which have been hugely welcomed by local residents. The people of the Glen and lower Rosemount areas deserve similar facilities and myself and the GDI are determined that our efforts will bear fruit in the near future.