‘Relief road is vital for town’

Having their say: Valerie and Ian Shatwell.
Having their say: Valerie and Ian Shatwell.

SHOPPERs in Ballyclare have said the long-awaited relief road project is “vital for the town.”

Holm NI, the developer behind the £400million Westlands scheme, had pledged to build a relief road linking the Templepatrick Road to the Doagh and Rashee roads in order to ease traffic congestion through Ballyclare.

The company has said it remains committed to the road building portion of its scheme despite funding problems which are now holding it up.

Shoppers in Ballyclare have said the town desperately needs the road - and sooner rather than later.

Doagh couple Valerie and Ian Shatwell said the town was “bedlam” during busy times.

“The roads around Ballyclare can be atrocious,” said Valerie, “it can be absolute bedlam to get in and out when it is busy.

“Ballyclare is the closest place for us to come and shop, plus it has all the services we need, but we would avoid it at certain times of the day because of the traffic.”

Heather Jenkins, whose family background is in shopkeeping, added: “I have always been keen to support local traders.

“But there needs to be the investment and the roads to allow people in and out of the town.

“It can take 40 minutes getting from Asda to the other end of the town - which is just dreadful and you can see why people would want to avoid it.

“Over the years housing has sprung up around Ballyclare, but there has not been the same change and development in the roads.

“This road could be vital to the town’s business.”

Read the full story in this week’s Times...