Public consulatation launched for new Abbey Community College build

Plans for a new post-primary school building in Newtownabbey are to be unveiled at an information event on Wednesday (November 24) as part of a public consultation.

Members of the project team will present development plans for Abbey Community College during the online event.

The new-build has been earmarked for land at Thee Mile Water Playing Fields, at Doagh Road.

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The public consultation is taking place ahead of a planning application to be submitted to Antrim and Newtownabbey Borough Council by the Education Authority.

The development will provide a “modern purpose-built education facility” with classrooms to accommodate in the region of 820 pupils as well as sports facilities with associated hard and soft play areas, parking, landscaping, a dedicated parents’ drop-off and pick-up area and bus set-down area and staff parking on-site.

Sports facilities will include five tennis courts, three grass pitches and one synthetic sports pitch.

Proposals for a new youth centre to be located alongside new pitches are also being put forward as part of the plan.

The Department of Finance has given the go-ahead for the project based on the “preferred option” – to build a new post-primary school for Abbey Community College, on the site of the council-owned Three Mile Water Playing Fields.

It is hoped that the planned sports facilities will be available for the use of the local community. The council has said that it will work with the Education Authority to take the project forward.

The school is located at Bridge Road at present. It opened its doors to students in September 2015 on the site of the former Monkstown Community School following its merger with Newtownabbey Community High.

Antrim and Newtownabbey Deputy Mayor Threemilewater Councillor Stephen Ross urged sports and youth club provision to be included in the plans.

He stressed that young people in the area should not be “left out in the cold”.

“We definitely have to utilise every available space for the benefit of the community,” he said.

He also called for traffic flow in the area to be taken into consideration.

Michelle Weir, Local Democracy Reporter


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