Lisburn Southern Relief Road


Construction scheme (proposed)
New single-carriageway link road to connect Hillhall Road to Ballynahinch Road, via Plantation Road and A49 Saintfield Road.
Total Length
1.9 km / 1.1 miles

Idea discussed at the Public Inquiry into the Belfast Metropolitan Area Plan - 2007

Supported by the former Lisburn City Council

First public consultation by developer Gravis Planning - Jun 2019

Second public consultation by developer Gravis Planning - Oct 2020
Schedule for construction unknown (as of Dec 2020)


£unknown - funded by private developers

See Also

General area map - Google Maps

Click here to jump straight down to updates for this scheme.

This scheme would see a new link road constructed round the south-eastern corner of the Lisburn urban area, as shown below. While fundamentally designed to provide access to new residential developments, from a transport perspective its primary purpose would be to connect the A49 Saintfield Road west to Ballynahinch Road and east to the B23 Hillhall Road by providing an alternative to navigating the congested Saintfield Road roundabout below the M1 motorway. The most useful section to longer-distance traffic would be the short stretch from Saintfield Road to Ballynahinch Road, as explained below.

Map of the proposed Lisburn Southern Relief Road as of Oct 2020 (click to enlarge).

The developer estimates that, if built, the new road would reduce traffic on Saintfield Road by 20%. This, of course, would happen because traffic heading to Lisburn city centre and Blaris industrial estate would likely switch to the Ballynahinch Road using the new link as it avoids the busy Saintfield Road roundabout. Traffic, therefore, would likely increase a good bit on Ballynahinch Road. The road would also provide a way for residents of the Saintfield Road and Plantation Road to get to Hillhall Road without using the Saintfield Road roundabout.

In 2019 the developer proposed to build the western part of the road first (Ballynahinch Road to Plantation Road) and the extension to Hillhall Road in a later phase. However, following public feedback, as of 2020 they are now proposing to build the whole road in one phase. The scheme includes four roundabouts, plus a short new link road to connect Limehill Road to the new link. There would also be priority T-junctions along the road to give access to the new residential land on either side. The road would probably be unclassified or, at most, have a B-classification.

This scheme was not an official proposal at the time of the publication of the Belfast Metropolitan Area Plan, but at the subsequent Public Inquiry, held in 2007-08, the idea was mooted by Lisburn City Council. At that time the Department of the Environment accepted that the idea had merit but it wasn't included in the final plan. DFI Roads, therefore, have no plans to either fund or build the road. This is in keeping with current policy, as the proposed road is primarily designed to serve new housing developments, and therefore should be privately funded.

Part of Full Lisburn Orbital?

The developer has noted that Lisburn already has a northern orbital road, in the form of the North Lisburn Feeder Road, as well as a western orbital in the form the existing Knockmore Road and the proposed (but unbuilt) Knockmore Link that would connect it to M1 junction 8, and then the existing A101 to the roundabout on the A1 at Sprucefield. In theory, an additional stretch of road (as yet unplanned) joining the A1 here to Ballynahinch Road could connect this series of roads to the Lisburn Southern Relief Road creating an orbital road around 75% of the city. This is quite an intriguing idea.


14 Jun 2021: The developer, Hillmark Homes, submitted an application for planning permission to construct the Lisburn Southern Relief Road on 5 May 2021. The reference is LA05/2021/0499/F. So that is the ball rolling on this. The associated documents are not a detailed design, but give a general idea of what is planned. At this point it appears to be a conventional two lane single-carriageway with roundabouts. (This information was sent to me by a site visitor – I can't locate the message now so I can't remember his name, but thank you!)

8 Dec 2020: Gravis Planning carried out an online public consultation into the proposed Lisburn Southern Relief Road in October 2020. The consultation has now closed, but the material still seems to be accessible at this link. This is their second consultation and the design of the road has been modified slightly in response to feedback from the 2019 consultation. It does not appear that the developer has yet applied for planning permission to build the houses or the link road and it is not clear what timescale is proposed.