Progress on £120k Rathcoole games facility project

The Rathcoole estate. (archive pic)
The Rathcoole estate. (archive pic)

Work to develop a Multi-Use Games Area (MUGA) in the Rathcoole estate is expected to begin towards the end of this year, Antrim and Newtownabbey Borough Council has confirmed.

The local authority’s Planning Committee recently granted permission for the development on an open area of Housing Executive-owned land at Rathmullan Drive, beside the Dunanney Centre.

The committee was informed that a total of 28 neighbours were notified about the plan and no letters of objection were received.

Members were told that a public consultation process conducted by the legacy council last year showed “broad support locally” for the scheme.

The MUGA will have a synthetic playing surface, a 3m high perimeter fence and floodlighting.

According to planners, the design of the facility is consistent with the design of other sports facilities in other urban locations, and there will be “no significant loss of biodiversity” as the existing tree planting around the perimeter of the site will remain.

Confirming that work on the MUGA development is due to start later this year, a council spokesperson told the Times: “A lease or land transfer was agreed with the Northern Ireland Housing Executive and it is currently being progressed.

“Planning permission has been granted and a budget of approximately £120,000 has been set aside for completion of the project.

“A tender for the work is currently being drawn up and the scheme is expected to start at the end of the year, with a finish date of December 2015 or early January 2016.”