Winter's Lane Link Road, Omagh


Construction scheme (proposed)
To provide a new link between Hospital Road and Crevenagh Road via Winter's Lane, Omagh.
Total Length
0.6 km / 0.4 miles (including 0.3 km / 0.2 miles of upgraded laneway)

Winter's Lane has existed for at least 150 years

1992 - Included in Omagh Area Plan 1987-2002
2007 - Scheme included in Sub-Regional Transportation Plan
No plans to construct in near future - as of Aug 2014

Photos / Map
See below.
See Also

General area map - Google Maps

This particular road scheme has been a proposal for at least twenty years. The purpose of the scheme is to provide a link road connecting Hospital Road - which is the distributor for a large residential area, and the new hospital - to the main A5. The rationale is that this would relieve the considerable pressure that exists at the "Swinging Bars" roundabout (where the Hospital Road merges with the A505 Killyclogher Road to continue into the town as Campsie Road) by providing a route to the south of the town bypassing this junction.

Winter's Lane has existed for at least 150 years. The easternmost stretch was upgraded during the second half of the twentieth century to a standard two-lane local road to provide access to housing developments, but the remaining 50%, on the western side, is a narrow tree-lined laneway, currently open to pedestrians but closed to vehicles. This link to Google Streetview shows how it looked in 2009. The map below highlights in RED the section of laneway that would need to be upgraded, while the existing "road" section of Winter's Lane is shown in BLUE. Together these would form the Winter's Lane Link Road.

View Winter's Lane Link Road, Omagh in a larger map

Despite not being implemented during the lifetime of the Omagh Area Plan 1987-2002, the 2007 Sub-Regional Transportation Plan chose to include the scheme, meaning that it is still a live proposal. There are various factors that affect its likelihood to proceed.

  • In favour of it proceeding is the fact that Stage 3 of the Omagh Throughpass opened in August 2006, bringing the main A5 much closer to the proposed route of this road. This makes any proposed link from Crevenagh Road to Hospital Road much more useful than it was when the A5 ran along Dublin Road much further to the west. It would also be a fairly inexpensive scheme, since 50% of the route is already in existence and would need almost no further work.
  • Against the scheme is the recent completion of the Cranny Link Road in January 2014 which also links the Hospital Road to the main A5, albeit further out of the town. This has the effect of providing another route for Hospital Road traffic, reducing the case for provision of the Winter's Lane Link Road. Additionally, there is the fact that Winter's Lane, as it currently exists, is really rather pretty and many would consider it to be "a bit of a shame" to replace it with a conventional road. In the light of the completion of the Cranny Link Road, a more nuanced approach might be a smaller-scale upgrade to become a combined foot and cycleway.

At the time of writing (August 2014) there do not appear to be any plans to build this road in the near future. There are no obvious housing areas nearby, so it's unlikely to attract funding from a private developer. This would mean TransportNI (the new name for Roads Service) funding the road, and local schemes like this tend to attract a very low priority.