Opportunity Omagh gets underway

by Gemma McCallan

A Tesco store similar to this one will get the ball rolling at Opportunity Omagh

It has been announced that the £350 million Opportunity Omagh development is underway with supermarket giants Tesco confirming their arrival. There have been mixed reactions to the news however, with claims that it will have a detrimental affect on the town centre, taking business out of the town centre. Omagh Chamber of Commerce President, Christopher Kelly has welcomed the news but has expressed concerns that the proposed location could create ‘a rival town’. Mr Kelly said: “The Chamber welcomes the news that Tesco has plans for a new store in Omagh and that the giant retailer is interested in investing the local community and creating jobs. The problem is that the proposed site on the Derry Road is the wrong site and is too far out of town.”

It has also been recognised however that the development, which is the biggest in the town in over 20 years, will be a huge catalyst for employment in the area, creating over 2000 sustainable jobs across a number of sectors. Chairman of Omagh District Council, Cllr Frankie Donnelly said: “The importance of the immediate boost and jobs for our local construction sector from this £350m project, combined with the longer term sustainable job creation and infrastructure provision are vital to ensure that Omagh continues to grow and develop as a place for our people to live and work.”