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  • Writer's pictureMichelle Weir (Local Democracy Reporter)

Randalstown Viaduct set to be illuminated with around £500k of new lights

Randalstown Viaduct at night.

Randalstown Viaduct. (Image: Six Mile Images)

A planning application to illuminate Randalstown Viaduct was given unanimous support at a meeting of Antrim and Newtownabbey Borough Council’s Planning Committee on Monday evening.

The application relates to the installation of five new black-coloured lighting columns, five metres in height, along the Randalstown Viaduct, a grade B+ listed bridge of special architectural interest.

The committee was advised the council is “concerned that the lack of lighting on the bridge is a health and safety issue which needs to be addressed”.

A report by planners to the committee also notes the Randalstown Conservation Guide “recognises the importance of the viaduct and seeks to encourage its enhancement through supplementary lighting”.

The report continues: “The design of the new columns is contemporary, though respectful as a modern intervention and as such is considered sympathetic to the listed structure.”

Other works proposed include the replacement of the existing arch up-lighting and the refurbishment of the period lighting features on the lattice bridge.

The report states: “Overall, it is considered that the proposed works will have no significant adverse impact on the existing character and setting of the viaduct, the adjacent Randalstown Bridge and the Randalstown Conservation Area and are acceptable in relation to design and appearance.”

It also said that the proposed works will “improve and enhance public safety on the viaduct.”

Randalstown Viaduct was constructed in the late 18th century and has nine arches. The top and part of the railway track have been converted into a

community garden, walkway and cycle path leading from Station Road to New Street.

The Department for Community’s Historic Environment Division (HED) has given its approval subject to conditions. The report says the lighting colour is to be “warm white”.

Initially, colour-changing lights illuminating the viaduct had been considered as part of an illumination project to highlight key civic features and built assets in Antrim and Newtownabbey including Ballyclare Town Hall, Lilian Bland Park in Glengormley, Crumlin Clock Tower and the Antrim under-pass and courthouse.

The illuminations, expected to cost almost £0.5m, were part of the council’s post-Covid economic recovery with the sum of £350k anticipated from the Department for Communities.


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