Waterside development could create over 8,000 Belfast jobs and 1,500 homes

  • Plans have been approved for the extensive Waterside development at the former Sirocco works site in Belfast, which could create over 8,000 jobs and provide homes for more than 1,500 people.

    The Belfast Waterside scheme will aim to transform the city’s east bank through a mixed use waterfront development made up of offices, apartments and a hotel.

    This will be combined with retail, hospitality and professional service units, as well as community and leisure facilities.

    The idea for the scheme was initially announced in June 2019, with planning approval finally announced this week.

    Chair of Belfast City Council’s Planning Committee, Councillor John Hussey said: “As the city starts to reopen and begin its journey to recovery, the development of Belfast’s Waterside will mark a significant step forward in Belfast’s regeneration; bringing a total £400m of investment and potentially creating over 8,000 jobs – that’s 20% of the jobs pledged in our community plan, the Belfast Agenda.

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    “The Belfast Waterside development will transform a key site which has been out of use since 1999 - providing new space for city centre living and high quality office space, as well as much needed affordable housing units, ensuring it becomes a place for everyone.”

    An employability and skills programme, designed to upskill residents and reflect the jobs delivered through the scheme, will also support the project as part of a Section 76 planning agreement secured by the council.

    A ‘creative cluster’ building facing onto the River Lagan, will include a public square to reflect the site’s industrial heritage, and provide new spaces for community and arts use.

    The 2.6 hectare site will be opened up through extensive public realm works, including a new street network and linear park, the removal of existing boundary walls, landscaping, a replacement pedestrian bridge over the River Lagan and improved access to both Short Strand and Bridge End.

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    For more information on Belfast’s Planning Service, go to www.belfastcity.gov.uk/planning and follow @belfastcc #BuildingBelfast on Twitter.

    About the author

    Niamh is a Sync NI writer with a previous background of working in FinTech and financial crime. She has a special interest in sports and emerging technologies. To connect with Niamh, feel free to send her an email or connect on Twitter.

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