15/10/2019

Plans Progress To Develop More Greenways Across Belfast

Plans are underway to widen the network of Greenways across east Belfast following the success of the Connswater Community Greenway.

The regeneration project was one of only three UK development schemes to be awarded 'Living Landmark' status. Building on its success, the EastSide Greenways concept plan aims to influence and explore the potential for a wider network of Greenways linking into a city-wide and regional network.

It's hoped new greenway routes will be identified to complement the Comber and Connswater greenways, with possible links exploited to enhance accessibility across the network.

The concept plan also has the potential to:

• Highlight the proximity of the network to existing community facilities and other destinations

• Develop the relationship of communities to the network

• Develop network 'hubs' such as C.S. Lewis Square

• Integrate the network with other transport infrastructure

• Encourage linkages with the city centre, Titanic Quarter and other key destinations

• Integrate the network with wider city and regional cycle and pedestrian networks

Engagement has already been undertaken with a number of key stakeholders to ensure their contribution and support for the EastSide Greenways concept plan. These include; Belfast City Council, Department for Infrastructure, The Executive Office, The National Lottery Community Fund and Sustrans NI.
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Belfast Lord Mayor Councillor John Finucane welcomed the plans and their potential for the city, saying: "As part of Council's proposed green and blue infrastructure plan and our open spaces strategy for the city, we recognise that parks, open spaces and waterways provide a range of economic, social and environmental benefits.

"Protecting, developing and improving access to good quality open spaces for everyone improves people's health and wellbeing, supports urban wildlife and biodiversity and encourages investment in the city's economy – all ambitions within the Belfast Agenda; so the plans which have been unveiled today by EastSide Greenways are very welcome and I look forward to seeing them come to fruition."

Michele Bryans from EastSide Greenways added: "We are very excited to be moving onto the next phase of our journey and to bring with us the vast knowledge gained from developing the Connswater Community Greenway.

"It is our role to encourage the use and enjoyment of parks, gardens, rivers and off-road transport routes in east Belfast and to promote the sustainable planning, design, management, maintenance and improvement of green spaces for the benefit of the public.

"EastSide Greenways will not only assist in developing the existence of our current Greenways but will help us build on its success as we aim to connect east Belfast and Belfast City into a greater network of Greenways.

"We could not achieve this without the support of our fantastic partners, our volunteers and the local community. On behalf of EastSide Greenways we would like to thank them for their continued support especially as we look to the future."



(JG/MH)

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