Traders in Derry want Attwood to ‘come clean’ over planning applications

Traders are angry after Environment Minister Alex Attwood further postponed an announcement of seven major planning applications in Derry, originally due at the end of June.

The applications include several major retail developments and at least one hotel, with developers keen for a decision in time to be ready for City of Culture year 2013.

The minister was to give his decision in early July, but this was delayed while he awaited the findings of a Retail Impact Study and a second provisional date was given for the end of July.

As that date has come and gone, Mr Attwood has now revealed that he will come to Derry in three weeks, but only to outline the conclusions of the impact studies, not to make known his decisions on the applications.

However, the city’s Independent Traders Forum chairman is convinced the minister has already decided and wants Alex Attwood to “come clean”.

Martin McCrossan said that he did not accept that the minister has not yet decided which of these major applications he is going to approve.