Newly elected Newry City Councillor Gavin Malone in his first public statement has put his support behind the forthcoming 15 acre city park at the Albert Basin in Newry and has asked that a project manager is appointed as soon as possible to move the development forward without delay.

Reiterating calls for Newry, Mourne and Down District Council to maintain its vision for a city centre park. Mr Malone who topped the poll in the recent council elections has stated that a city centre park is essential to promoting a green space within a busy urban setting, promoting health and well being and having a park whereby members of the public and community groups alike can enjoy and be proud of.

The site of the park at present. Photograph: Columba O'Hare/
The site of the park at present. Photograph: Columba O'Hare/

Speaking on the issue Councillor Malone stated “I’ve supported this issue from the word go and at the moment Newry remains the only city in Ireland that does not have a City Park. I will endeavor to work closely with my fellow Councillors and council officials to ensure that the Albert basin park project becomes a reality.”

Last year Newry, Mourne and Down District Council set up a working group to help with the development of the project but the current chief executive has controversially failed to appoint a project manager.  Despite having a timeline in place to appoint a project manager early next year it is the opinion of various groups and Councillor Malone that delays need to be avoided and that a project manager needs to be appointed as soon as possible.

“I think it is important that we avoid any delays at this stage. We have made considerable progress over the past year in relation to this issue and we need to keep the momentum going. Therefore it is imperative that we appoint a project manager as soon as possible. I will meet with the chief executive over the coming weeks to discuss the council’s plans moving forward.”

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