The new regeneration plan hopes to look to development until 2040 and beyond
A new regeneration plan for Ballybofey and Stranorlar has been announced this week.
It will see Donegal County Council working closely with the Ballybofey and Stranorlar Integrated Community Company (BASICC) to identify key priorities and actions that will see the sustainable regeneration of the town up to 2040 and beyond.
This plan will build on the work undertaken in the Twin Towns over the last 12 months and will set out the regeneration aspirations and priorities with a view to strengthening the capacity and competitiveness of the town centres.
Pasparakis Friel Architects have been appointed to carry out this work.
Welcoming this announcement cathaoirleach of Stranorlar Municipal District, Cllr Gary Doherty said he was delighted to see this strong regeneration focus on these towns.
"The Twin Towns are key strategic drivers for growth in Donegal given the quality commercial base that exists alongside the caliber of businesses we have here in the towns and the extent of the retail and hospitality offering.”
He added: “I would encourage the whole community to engage with the consultation process over the coming months, particularly the business community.
"It is vital that the regeneration strategy is informed by the contribution and aspirations of key stakeholders in maximizing the untapped potential of the area as a vibrant place to live, work and invest and one that will underpin a prosperous future for the entire community.”
This plan will build on the work carried out in the Twin Towns over the last number of months including the community consultation event which took place in Kee’s Hotel in November 2019 attended by over 60 people.
Since this event and while responding to Covid-19, work has continued with projects being developed and funding applications submitted.
Kieran Doherty, chairman of BASICC explained that Pasparakis Friel Architects will lead on the next stage of this project.
"They will take all the views from our public event in 2019 on board but they also want to learn more from the community.
"The sense of optimism and opportunity generated from the event in November has helped drive the work of our group over the last number of months.
"The strategy will help guide our own priorities and actions for the town centres. We want to enhance Ballybofey and Stranorlar’s unique sense of place and identify actions that will be positive for the economy and community in the twin towns”.
Sinead McCauley of the council's regeneration and development team added that alongside the regeneration strategy, they are developing an exciting town centre regeneration project.
"The project will improve pedestrian accessibility, provide a town square and reuse a heritage building. Plans for this project will be available for the public to view in the coming weeks.”
To get involved residents, visitors, business owners, and interested parties are invited to have their say using this online survey https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/Ballybofey-Stranorlar-Regeneration.
And on Saturday, September 12 Pasparakis Friel Architects will hold a streetside consultation session outside McElhinney's Store between 12 noon and 2pm and will be inviting passers-by to have their say on how they think the town centres could develop over the next 20 years.
Keep up to date on how the project unfolds by following it on Facebook: Ballybofey-Stranorlar Regeneration.
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