Dungannon estate agents Maneely & Co has revealed a 3D animation (click) of just what is planned for Coalisland claypits - and it is very impressive.
Asked if it was some sort of April fool as the plans seem like something you would see in Monaco, not the humble former industrial town of Coalisland, he said: “This is absolutely happening!”
David Henderson, the man behind the grand plans, owns the land outright with the help of a loan from The Route Finance.
And plans for the 2.5m race-track, hotel, campsite, retail and office space and parklands are expected to be submitted to planners in the next six weeks.
Speaking about the exciting development, Niall Maneely said: “It’s class for the area. It’s going in for planning in the next six weeks.”
As for how far on the plans are, he said: “they’ve bought the ground (and) spent a huge amounts of money of research and reports.
“Badgers, butterflies, bats... now they are just undertaking all the engineering type reports.”
But Mr Maneely said Mr Henderson and his team have already completed a public consultation on the plans as well as road traffic reports.
Since the video was uploaded on to the Maneely & Co Facebook page last night, it has had an overwhelmingly positive reaction.
One commentator has praised Mr Henderson for looking to develop the site.
He said: “For years we’ve seen industry leaving town. Having met David Henderson, who by the way comes to Coalisland on the bus every morning - he is an amazing man, great to see this development on the site where the first Tyrone bricks where made. For too long Coalisland has lost its industrial heritage that made this area. Maybe we will get our spade mill back from Ulster museum and get the canal reopened. Good luck to all involved.”
Another said: “A huge investment that would be amazing to see happen, I just don’t know that the country has a high enough percentage of population interested in Motorsport to support such a facility. Maybe race series with a couple of classes that “anyone” can afford like a more consistently run version of the Sunday series from back in the day and similar idea for motorbikes etc too.”
Details on the The Route Investors site about the project said: “The Route – Finance approved a £875,000 loan for the purchase of a former brick clay pit site in County Tyrone, Northern Ireland, which extends to nearly 200 acres and borders the town of Coalisland.
“David Henderson of Manna Developments received the funding from The Route investors, which he will use to transform the site from its current state of a disused coal mine into a motorsports racetrack for the purposes of motorcycle road racing. Motorcycle racing is very popular in Northern Ireland. The Ulster Grand Prix, known as the ‘world’s fastest road race’ that takes place on the Dundrod Circuit near Belfast, attracts racers from around the globe, and is considered to be on a par with the world famous Isle of Man TT race.
“The track itself will have the ability to offer one large circuit approaching 2.5 miles, or a number of smaller ones of less than one mile that can operate at the same time, dependent upon the needs of the motorsport discipline. Ultimately the circuit will service everything from local club status to international events for some sports.”