The first phase of £185million A6 Randalstown to Castledawson Dualling Scheme has been officially opened
The scheme to upgrade almost 15 kilometres of the A6 North Western Transport Corridor between Randalstown and Castledawson is being delivered in two phases.
A statement from the Department for Infrastructure said traffic was allowed to use a seven kilometre stretch of the Randalstown to Toome dual carriageway for the first time in August, however, lane and speed restrictions remained in place while works to tie in the new dual carriageway to the existing road network were constructed.
Those final works have now been completed and the whole 7.5 kilometre stretch of new dual carriageway is now fully open between Toome and the M22 at Randalstown.
Speaking at the official opening in Toome, Katrina Godfrey, Permanent Secretary at the Department for Infrastructure said: “The A6 is a strategically important route as it connects the North West to Belfast and beyond.
"The construction of the Flagship Randalstown to Castledawson Dualling scheme will contribute to the economic development of the region and bring long term benefits to road users and local communities.
"It is also helping to secure jobs in the construction industry, with the vast majority of construction spend going directly to the local economy.
“The completion of the first phase is a significant milestone for the scheme and welcome news for the 20,000 vehicles using the route each day.
"The feedback from road users since the opening of the first stretch of new dual carriageway has already been extremely positive, with shorter, safer and more reliable journey times already experienced.
"With the works in this section now completed and the traffic restrictions removed, road safety will be further enhanced for car user, freight and the public transport services along this route."
“Delivering extensive improvements to the roads infrastructure involves the cooperation and