Agenda item


            The Committee was provided with an update on the Belfast City Regeneration Tracker which captured regeneration and development activity which had taken place in the City during 2022, as aligned to the Belfast Agenda and the eight core policies of the Belfast City Centre Regeneration and Investment Strategy (BCCRIS). 


            The Senior Development Manager provided a presentation of the Regeneration Tracker with an overview of major regeneration and development activity which has taken place across Belfast during 2022 (1st January – 31st December).


            It was reported that the Belfast Agenda sets out the growth aspirations for the city, including increasing the city population, supporting inclusive economic growth, improving health and well-being for all our citizens and addressing the Climate Emergency. This was further reflected in the Belfast City Centre Regeneration and Investment Strategy (BCCRIS) which sets out our collective ambition for the continued growth and regeneration of the city core and its surrounding areas to 2030. It contained a road map of policies to guide city centre decision-making and key projects that translated those policies into action, aligned to the overarching ambitions outlined within the Belfast Agenda. BCCRIS sought to address the universal elements of a thriving city centre as well as challenges and conditions that were unique to Belfast.


            The Senior Development Manager presented examples of regeneration underway across the city under the following eight core principles, identifying the progress that continues to be seen through the city in relation to delivering the Belfast Agenda, as well as key areas that further work is required and the measures that Council are implementing with delivery partners to address these:


1.      Increase the Employment Population - such as The Ewart, Olympic House, the Shipmaker’s House, CreateLab and Kainos;

2.      Increase the Residential Population – City Centre based – such as Belfast Waterside, Weavers Cross, Pilot Street, McClure Street and College Square North; Housing Led Regeneration – such as the Inner North West and Dunbar Street; Student Accommodation – such as Aster House and Alma Place; Outside City Centre – such as Brookfield Mill, Glenmona and Beersbridge Road;

3.      Manage the Retail Offer – City Centre – such as Primark, the Keep, the Avenue, Titanic Distillers; Outside City Centre – such as Giant’s Park, Portview Trade Centrea and Cityside Retail;

4.      Maximise the Tourism Opportunity; City Centre – such as Belfast Stories, the Dean, War Memorial Building; Outside City Centre – such as Mountainview Hotel Eastside Hotel, St. Comgall’s and Belfast City Airport;

5.      Create Regional Learning and Innovation Centres; such as Ulster University, Global Innovation Institute, Loop Studios, iReach and W5 LIFE;

6.      Create a Green, Walkable, Cyclable Centre - such as Adelaide Street, Little Patrick Street, Cathedral Gardens and City Quay Gardens;

7.      Connect to the City Around - such as Belfast Grand Central, Glider Phase 2 and Belfast Bikes; and

8.      Shared space and social impact - such as Loft lines, the Ewart and 2 Royal Avenue. 


            To facilitate the implementation of the eight policies for the city centre, BCCRIS had identified a series of projects aimed at creating a liveable and economically thriving city, alongside, identifying the following five Special Action Areas:


·        Inner North;

·        Inner West;

·        North East Quarter;

·        Transport Hub and South Centre; and

·        Oxford Street and the Eastern Bank.


            The Committee was reminded that various workstreams and programmes of work were underway to support the implementation of BCCRIS, including the Future City Centre Programme, A Bolder Vision, the Vacant to Vibrant Programme, Clean, Green, Safe and Inclusive, along with a programme of environmental improvement schemes across the city aimed at improving sustainable and active travel, improving safety and cleanliness, addressing dereliction and informing the emerging major public schemes coming forward within the city. These interventions had also formed a critical role in setting the future aspirations of the city as well as informing design and place-making objectives within developments as they come forward through design and delivery. 


            The Members were also briefed on the importance that occupiers, investors and delivery agents were putting on delivering Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) outcomes, with more of a focus on delivering BREAMM excellent buildings, with an expectation that in the future it was likely that future developments would see an increase in reusing existing building stock.


            During discussion, Director of City Regeneration and Development and Senior Development Manager answered a range of questions in relation to city centre living, social and affordable housing in the city centre and clusters of student accommodation.




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