The Department of Regional Development has committed funding of over £40,000 for a pedestrian crossing at Gault’s Corner.
The busy junction, which is used by pupils from Woodburn Primary School, has been the target of a safety campaign since the beginning of the new school year in September.
In a statement, a Roads Service spokesperson said: “The minister can confirm that a PUFFIN style signal-controlled crossing will be provided at Gault’s Corner, Woodburn Road.
“This will assist pedestrians cross the Upper Road which has become more difficult to due increased traffic volumes resulting from the on-going road works on the A2.
“The scheme will also include the removal of the existing island that was creating some problems for the school crossing patrol. A number of design issues have yet to be finalised but it is proposed that this work will be carried out in the new year.”
Speaking to the TIMES last week, Woodburn principal Melanie Craig said: “We were absolutely delighted to hear the news; a pedestrian crossing is exactly what we were looking for as we thought it was the best option to keep the children safe. As far as I’m aware the lights will be full-time so it will be great for any pupils who are staying in after school.
“I had sent a note home with the children to let parents know and I’m sure they’ll be delighted as well.
“We’d like to extend our thanks to Councillor Andrew Wilson for all his help and support right the way through the campaign.”
Welcoming the development, Cllr Wilson said: “It is a timely Christmas present for all of us that have been involved in the campaign. I think it was obvious to those of us who regularly travel in the general area of Woodburn Primary School that there was a very real traffic problem, and it was a case of being pro-active, instead of reactive. There had been a number of reports of near misses and I am content that the junction improvements will make the route safer for children, parents and locals.
“I would like to personally thank every single parent, the school’s PTA, the teachers, staff, headmistress, and local residents who attended the monthly demonstrations at the junction in support of a crossing with lights. Their support has gone a long way in helping me to successfully argue the need for the new and improved junction.”