Over £690k awarded to help business clusters and community groups revitalise Belfast

  • More than 30 projects to reimagine and revamp city spaces have received the green light, thanks to funding provided by the Department for Communities' Covid-19 Recovery: Revitalisation Programme.

    Belfast City Council has awarded over £690,000 to 32 business clusters and community groups across the city as part of its efforts to support recovery in the post Covid journey.

    A diverse range of environmental improvement schemes including parklets, shop front and environmental improvements will now be possible – and the projects are expected to deliver long-term benefits for the city centre, local communities and local areas.

    Councillor David Brooks, Chair of Belfast City Council’s City Growth and Regeneration Committee said: “The Covid-19 pandemic has forced us all to rethink how we use our city’s spaces and places and given us a renewed impetus to make our city more vibrant, diverse, and inclusive.

    "We knew that our businesses and community groups would come up with innovative proposals to help increase footfall and boost spend in local businesses and we’re very much looking forward to seeing these projects come to fruition, because they’ll help our communities and our city recover from the effects of the pandemic.”

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    The Covid-19 Recovery: Revitalisation Programme Business Cluster and Community Grant Scheme gave groups and partnerships across Belfast the opportunity to apply for capital grants worth £10,000 - £25,000 enhance their local areas and to help businesses and community groups to reopen safely.

    A number of parklets will be created, converting areas of land to encourage people to socialise safely in pleasant surroundings.

    Business clusters will carry out shopfront improvements and environmental enhancements to improve the appearance of their businesses and outside space.

    Environmental projects will include improvements to a community farm, community gardens, sensory gardens, upgrading of an outdoor art installation and a mural project that will encourage communities to enjoy the outdoors using inclusive, shared spaces.

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    Communities Minister Deirdre Hargey said: “This investment is a further example of the support my Department has provided so that practical measures can be put in place to support our cities, towns and communities as they recover from the devastating impacts of the pandemic.

    "In addition to my Department’s business as usual programmes, I have also sought to support Councils, businesses, community groups, and ultimately our people through the pandemic via the Covid-19 Recovery: Revitalisation Programme.

    "This has enabled support for a wide range of schemes including physical interventions and streetscape improvements, signage and dressing, access and connectivity, sustainable and active travel measures, and additional street cleansing and neighbourhood safety.”

    The investment is part of a wider programme of revitalisation that will be delivered in partnership with the Department for Communities.

    Some of the organisations awarded funding include youth clubs, sports groups and residents' assocations.

    Source: Belfast City Council press release

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