Northern Ireland

'Traffic master plan' for Belfast to be revealed

The Department for Regional Development is to unveil a "traffic master plan" for Belfast city centre.

The plan, to be launched later on Thursday, is aimed at tackling the ongoing traffic problems in the area.

It is expected that the plan will recommend the removal of through traffic from the city centre.

There have been repeated calls in the past for Belfast to follow the example of other British cities and pedestrianise its shopping district.

In October 2009 Ulster Unionist councillor and former Lord Mayor Jim Rodgers, called for "pedestrianisation of Belfast city centre as a matter of urgency".

He said that health and safety concerns should come before financial considerations.

Speaking following a number of accidents involving pedestrians being hit by vehicles in the city centre he said: "While there are various views on the pedestrianisation issue, it is clear that unnecessary deaths must be avoided at all costs."