31/01/2005

Green light given for Derry city hotel site

The regeneration of Londonderry city centre was given a significant boost today with the announcement that the Department of Social Development had repossessed the former City Hotel site in Foyle Street.

Announcing the purchase, Social Development Minister, John Spellar, said the site, which has lain empty for almost ten years, was a key development site within the inner city.

“It is now available for development and I have asked the North West Development Office to open urgent discussions with key stakeholders in the city including Derry City Council and ILEX about the potential preferred uses of the site,” he added.

The Director of the North West Development Office, Declan O’Hare, acknowledged that there have been difficulties in bringing about development of the one acre city centre site.

He said: “The site was earmarked for a hotel and multi-storey car park development in 1996 following a public development competition.

“Following the failure of the company awarded a license to construct the hotel, City Hotel (Derry) Ltd, to develop the site, the Department for Social Development sought re-possession of the site in 1999.

“This was resisted by the company, leading to a protracted legal battle in the High Court and Lands Tribunal, which culminated in a ruling last week that the Department was entitled to re-enter and possess the site.”

The news that the site is back in the ownership of the North West Development Office has been welcomed by local political and business leaders.

SDLP Assembly Member for Foyle, Pat Ramsey, said: “This has been a long awaited decision, which I welcome. The site is a valuable asset that can now be used for the economic benefit of everyone living in Derry.”

(MB)

Related Northern Ireland News Stories
Click here for the latest headlines.

30 November 2020
Warning Issued Over High Levels Of Air Pollution
The Department of the Environment have issued a warning of high levels of air pollution, with particulate matter across Northern Ireland expected to remain high. During periods of High Pollution the symptoms of people with lung or heart disease may worsen. Healthy people are unlikely to experience any ill effects, the DotE warned.
04 December 2020
No Further Restrictions Before Christmas
NI's non-essential retail and some parts of the hospitality sector will be allowed to reopen again next Friday, as the current circuit breaker restrictions end at midnight on Thursday 10 December. It follows Stormont talks on Thursday, following which Ministers said that there would not be any new restrictions before Christmas.
19 February 2004
Major development secured for key waterside site
A multi-million pound development scheme for the Distillery Brae site in the Waterside area of Londonderry has been announced by the Department for Social Development.
01 December 2020
Police Seize 'Substantial Amount' Of Illegal Alcohol In West Belfast
Police came under attack in west Belfast as they attempted to remove two van-loads of seized alcohol on Monday afternoon. Police uncovered a "substantial amount of alcohol" at a commercial property on the Falls Road as they conducted a search under warrant.
26 November 2020
Appeal For Information Following West Belfast Robbery
Police have issued an appeal for information following a report of an armed robbery at business premises at the Beechmount Avenue area of west Belfast this morning – Thursday 26th November. Making the appeal, Detective Inspector Keith Wilson said: "Shortly before 8:15am, it was reported that two masked men entered a shop in the area.