10/03/2011

Belfast's Westside Regeneration Moves Ahead

The next steps in the proposed regeneration of the Westside area of Belfast city centre have been revealed.

These include a new promotional campaign and website for developers to declare their interest in delivering the regeneration masterplan for the Greater Castle Street area; and submission of the final planning application for the public realm renewal of Bank Square, Bank Street, Berry Street, Chapel Lane and Upper King Street.

The NI Social Development Minister Alex Attwood has announced that: "The promotion of my Department's Westside Masterplan has been in abeyance due to the downturn in the property market. However, I believe that the time is now right to test the market as the economy begins to recover.

"Belfast City Centre's Westside District is the key route from west Belfast to the main shopping area.
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"I invite the property development and investment sector to come forward with proposals which respond to our vision to regenerate the area as a vibrant mixed-use quarter, with an emphasis on the encouragement of new restaurants, cafés, bars and living accommodation and strengthening its role as a location for independent retailers," he said, noting that he had published a Masterplan for the Westside Regeneration district in September 2009 and that the approval of funding for the public realm renewal scheme is subject to available budget, satisfactory appraisal and obtaining planning approval.

The scheme aims to establish the location as a vibrant mixed-use quarter with an emphasis on encouragement of new cafes, bars, restaurants and living accommodation.

It also seeks to strengthening the independent/specialist retail sector and to build on the area's individual and unique character by delivering a commercially viable new core to the Westside with an enhanced urban realm and improved linkages to neighbouring areas by creating an attractive streetscape which is accessible to all.

See: www.belfastwestside.com/

(GK/KMcA)

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