East Antrim MLA, Stewart Dickson, has expressed his huge disappointment at the news that the York Street Interchange Project has been put on hold.
The £100million project had been given the go-ahead last year and was aimed at solving Belfast’s traffic problems at one of the busiest junctions in the city, and what is the 3rd busiest junction in the UK, whilst also including the laying of foundations under the Dargen Rail Bridge to enable the provision of enhanced rail access between East Antrim and Belfast Central Station.
In a recent report released by Transport NI it was revealed that the project, which had 40% of its funding being provided by the EU, was now on hold indefinitely following the result of the EU referendum.
Mr Dickson said: “Yorkgate interchange is a junction which currently clogs up the arteries that serve Belfast and East Antrim. This project would have benefited my constituents greatly both on the road and rail, providing a true gateway into all parts of my constituency.
“Having been so committed to this ‘once in a lifetime’ opportunity to eradicate this rail and road bottleneck, only to see it being halted, despite finally getting the go-ahead, is extremely disappointing news.”
The report by Transport NI also revealed that out of 34 projects currently being undertaken, the Yorkgate interchange is the only project to have been placed on hold.
Dickson concluded: “I do not understand why this project is the only one that has been put on hold, despite it probably being the most crucial of them all. I hope the Minister for Infrastructure will be able to shed some light on this matter in the coming days, and, to that end, I have asked him a series of searching questions on the matter.”