“This is a major piece of investment into our city centre..”

We now know that Belfast is built on sleech, but apparently “unforeseen underground conditions” are causing problems in Londonderry too. From the BBC report

Work began on the regeneration of Guildhall Square and Waterloo Place over six months ago. Guildhall Square is closed while the existing square is replaced, but it is unclear whether the work will continue. The Department for Social Development said it was due to a number of “unforeseen underground conditions”. These were in relation to the replacement of the construction base once construction work had begun. The DSD said its request for additional funds could not be met in the current financial climate, but the department remained committed to delivering the scheme in its entirety subject to the availability of necessary funding.

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  • StarHound

    Is someone taking the piss here? Guildhall Square and nearby, in the very centre of Derry, is a series of holes and trenches surrounded by plastic fences.

    Hopefully this is being let out by the DSD to shame those who won’t cough up.

  • Marty McG

    The underground problems were either caused by the rebels under King James in 1689/90 or their equivalents from the 1969-1994, Sinn Fein / IRA who caused bombs to explode within the vicinity of the area which is now problematic.

    It was interesting to hear Meave McLaughlin, Sinn Fein / IRA councillor in the city spouting on Radio Foyle this morning as to why the Department of Social Development hadn’t seen the problems in advance. Perhaps she should have had an input considering her role in the ‘war’ in the city…..she may have known where the warheads were planted.

  • Rory Carr

    It would appear that it is now becoming clear that Northern Ireland was built upon very insecure foundations indeed.

    “Well who’da thunk it, Jed?”

  • Pirate

    Cá bhfuil “Londonderry”?

  • J Kelly

    I dont believe this is a move by DSD to shame anyone because Radio has attempted all day to get the minister fo Social Development for a comment with no joy. The ironic thing about this is Margaret has launched this project, celebrated every phase and her sdlp colleagues in derry have praised her on dozens of occasions.

  • J Kelly

    Radio Foyle

  • joeCanuck

    That’s funny, Rory. Good one.

    And the submit word is “bad”. hehehe

  • All the land from the front of the walls to the river at Guildhall Place is reclaimed and while it has been built upon for a few hundred years, it cannot be fully stable if you dig down far enough. Anyone who has ever been up in Debenham’s cafe in Foyleside can see looking over to the Guildhall that the front of the building leans a little towards the walls. At various times over the years there has also been occasions when there was subsidence, usually due to the many tunnels that honeycomb the ‘island’. Why the DSD didn’t foresee this is only marginally more of a wonder than why the Council, including Maeve the béal, failed to grasp it as a possibility. Necks of brass are obviously a prerequisite for those in public office.

  • Charlemagne

    The parts that have been completed to date are truely dire and bear no relation to the surrounding buildings.

  • Marcas

    It was sad to see in Shipquay Place the quayside soil where pilgims once landed on their way to Colmcille’s shrine and the soil onto which the first Londoners stepped to start the Plantation of Ulster being excavated by FP McCann to make way for two immense underground concrete tanks for the water feature for the DSD public realm scheme, between the 17th Century City Walls and the 19th Century Guildhall. It reminds me of the destruction of the Buddhas of Bamyan by the Taliban. Could not imagine that such an intervention would be allowed at the Causeway. There goes Derry’s hopes for World Heritage Status.

  • doopa

    To be honest – the whole plan is a farce anyway. The pedestrian areas in the town should be expanded not contracted. Derry is full of terrible planning decisions. See the quayside, the sainsburys and assorted shops further up the quay, and the generally shit state of the city.

  • Column Walker

    A number of groups objected to the proposals for that very reason, Charlemagne. The geometric design, with corporate “anywhere” materials, pays scant regard to the surrounding buildings. Apparently it is meant to represent the shirt industry of the city i.e a warp and weft pattern. DSD paid no attention to the objectors who wanted a public realm scheme but one that had a more appropriate design.

    I wonder if the timing of todays DOE News Release about planning approval for the new pedestrian “Peace” bridge is in any way connected with this story?

  • paddy

    best thing to come out of it was the ulster bus

  • igor

    Are all those fountains shooting up in the middle of the pavement like that a dastardly plan by Unionists to infer that Derry people need a good wash?