8th Jul 2019 in Business

BID manager hopes for continued positive engagement for city development

CQ BID, the Cathedral Quarter Business Improvement District, has welcomed revised plans for the multi-million pound development ‘Tribeca’.

Following a meeting last week with Castlebrooke Investments when stakeholders from Cathedral Quarter saw new plans for the 12-acre site bordering Donegall and North Street.

CQ BID Manager, Gareth Neill, said that it appears that the developers have listened to stakeholders taking on board comments and revised the initial proposals.
“The revised plans appear to have taken consideration of the concerns and worries that were expressed,” he explained. “What is important now is that the new voluntary consultation period will see Castlebrooke Investments continue to listen and respond to feedback from those that work and visit the area.

Mr Neill was among a delegation that met with the investment team and project architects Squire & Partners earlier this week.
The BID manager said the revised scale and massing of the buildings and revisiting the uses; in particular the significant additional residential offering will be of great benefit to the wider City Centre.

“We particularly welcome the plan to re-visit Donegall Arcade,” said Mr Neill. “Since the fire in 2004 this connection in the Cathedral Quarter has been a sorely missed opportunity”

“It will breathe new life and opportunity for smaller bespoke retailing and commercial activity and re-open connections that will make the area more accessible to all and provide a unique experience for the city centre.

“With the anticipated influx of students as the Ulster University campus nears completion this has the potential to be a vibrant hub emphasising the CQ ethos of live, work and play.”

CQ BID Manager, Gareth Neill

Mr Neill said all in the area hope that the pledges made at the meeting will be followed through.

“We received a firm commitment to the heritage assets and their rejuvenation through an innovative design approach which will add incredible value to the overall scheme.

“The CQ BID welcomed Castlebrooke’s positive messaging around pedestrian led design and supporting sustainable travel opportunities, and move away from the original underground car parking proposals.

“Businesses in and around Cathedral Quarter are keen to see progress made in a timely and efficient manner.

“Garfield & North will commence towards the end of 2019 and we hope to see City planners take a  proactive approach to make sure the Tribeca proposals are thoroughly assessed but at the same time do not stall in the planning system.”

Mr Neill added that the Cathedral Quarter BID also welcomed Castlebrooke’s commitment to a wider ranging engagement plan for the area; building capacity with local interest groups, residents, visitors and business owners to make sure the scheme is beneficial for all concerned.

The new Castlebrooke Investments revision include a reduction in height of the proposed Grade A office block on the corner of North Street and Rosemary Street and retention of the historic streetscape of the area.

The appointment of Squire & Partners and commitment to work with conservation architects from Belfast-based Consarc Design Group has also been welcomed by the CQ BID team.

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