WITH ITS modernistic bridge sweeping across the lough connecting Enniskillen town centre to Cornagrade and a stylish, state-of-the-art college sprawling over the old Erne hospital site – this is how the county town’s major revamp could look.
Plans to transform the outskirts of Enniskillen town centre has officially been set in motion with a number of public services set to move their premises to the site creating what has been dubbed a ‘public services hub’.
The South West College will be joined by the Ambulance Service NI, the Enniskillen Gaels GAA club and, possibly, the Enniskillen library.
It is all part of the Department for Social Development’s Enniskillen Master Plan while the demolition of the site is due to be finished by the end of next month.
Malachy McAleer, Director of the South West College, told the Fermanagh Herald: “The council are buying the site off the Trust (Western Health and Social Care Trust) and then we are going to buy a portion of the land off the council to develop the site for a new college.
“There’s some processes to be undertaken before we get to the stage of costs like dealing with a land quality assessment. As the site is being cleared it’s being boreholed to establish land quality and all those items on various sites will be set into land valuation.
“We will be going out to tender for the design services and the architect team will be appointed and it’s up to them how they manage it (the site).”
However, he denied reports that the land is to be flattened.
“But most definitely not, there will be no question of that in the form of the site being changed.
“Monaghan and Keyes are currently assisting us in the transferral process and have been appointed to guide us through the land purchase.”
Mr McAleer, however, was not keen to talk about detailed plans for the site saying only they are in the negotiation stages with the trust and Fermanagh District Council.
“It will be a whole new look to Enniskillen,” he added.
“I suppose we are still working through a process to get this all together for the end of March and I think we will continue to work hard and make sure we are in a position that it all happens.
“It’s very early to have celebrations. We have to work our way to get everything in place.”
A statement from council confirmed it is to purchase the land which will then be sold to the South West College.
It was also stated that the council will contribute around £3,500 towards the site for investigation
“The Ambulance Service is proposing to build a new centre on the site, located in the former car park, however this does not involve the council.
“A site investigation of the ground conditions, outside the buildings, had been completed with some minimal contamination indicated in a very localised area.
“A site investigation under the buildings was now required urgently. It was proposed that the WHSCT, the South West College and the Council CO-fund this work.
“The council is to buy the site excluding the Ambulance Service portion.
“The contract for purchase to include a clause regarding unknown ground conditions if the site investigation had not been completed.”
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