Regeneration projects in the northern part of Belfast city centre have the potential to transform the area as radically as Laganside transformed the waterfront, according to RICS.
Ben Collins, the organisation’s director, says that initiatives including the University of Ulster’s Belfast City Campus and the next phase of the Belfast Streets Ahead Scheme promise world-class improvements.
He was speaking ahead of an RICS event this afternoon to explore past, present and future regeneration projects in Belfast, intended to encourage best practice amongst policy makers and the property and construction industries.
Speakers at the event included the Lord Mayor of Belfast, Máirtín Ó Muilleoir; Professor Alastair Adair, Pro-Vice-Chancellor at the University of Ulster; and Gerry Millar, Director of Property and Projects at Belfast City Council.
Mr Collins points out: “We know that Belfast is capable of world-class regeneration projects. Laganside is internationally recognised, the first phase of the Belfast Streets Ahead scheme won an international RICS Regeneration Award, and there are other examples”.
“The city is also continuing to change, with significant projects underway or in the planning. Belfast City Council published a £150million investment programme 2012-2015 which includes numerous city centre investments, work is underway on the University of Ulster’s Belfast City Campus, and the Belfast Street’s Ahead scheme will bring about further important public realm enhancements,” he continues.
“This will transform the northern part of the city centre in particular, improving the look and feel of the area, encouraging more people to live, work and play there, and supporting investment that will benefit the city as a whole,” he adds.
Speaking at the event, Belfast Lord Mayor Máirtín Ó Muilleoir said: “The face of Belfast is constantly evolving. Great credit must go to our construction industry for driving forward this period of regeneration along with the members of RICS. The future development of our city is very important for helping our tourism industry and making Belfast a better place to live and work. There are exciting times ahead with the new University of Ulster development on the horizon along with a number of Belfast City Council plans.”