A notorious black path which has been a magnet for anti-social behaviour for more than a decade, could be set to close.
The long path, which formerly linked Lurgan with Craigavon through the Taghnevan estate, had become a problem for many locals who were tortured by youths drinking and taking drugs.
However in recent years housing developments emerged close to the black path and youths gathering in the area had been causing distress.
Lurgan Sinn Féin Councillor Liam Mackle said: “The path which is no longer in use has become overgrown of late and has attracted a lot of anti-social behaviour particularly coming into the summer months. I have now got assurances from Council officers that the closure of this path will happen soon. Both Council and Transport NI are working on the matter. Residents in the area will be happy that this path, which has been attracting anti social behaviour for many years, is to be closed at last.”
A Department for Infrastructure spokesperson said: “The Department has been asked to abandon the black path at the rear of Cooldreena and Ashdene Park in Taghnevan to remove it as a focus for antisocial behaviour in the area. The Department therefore proposes to make “The Footpath between Ashdene Park, Taghnevan and Tullygally East Road, Craigavon (Footpath) (Abandonment) Order (NI) 2016” later this year.
“A survey of nearby residents carried out by Taghnevan Community Development association confirmed that 272 people were in favour of the abandonment. However, following preliminary consultation in October 2015 one objection to the proposed abandonment was received. During the consultation no further objections were received but the initial objection was not removed. The Department has considered the objection and will be writing to the objector to advise of its decision. Subject to the Minister’s approval the draft Order will be submitted to the Committee in the NI Assembly. Once it has been considered by the Committee following the summer recess the Order is likely to be made in September 2016 to come into operation in October/ November 2016.”