Belfast mega-project reworked

Squire & Partners' design changes to the £500 million transformation of Belfast's north-eastern quarter will go on public display next week (29 July).

Developer Castlebrooke Investments announced last month it had appointed the practice to work on amendments to the outline planning application for Tribeca Belfast and launched a voluntary 10-week consultation ahead of submission of its proposal this autumn.

Chapman Taylor had previously worked on the mixed-use scheme, once billed as the 'largest-ever single redevelopment' in Belfast city centre but is no longer invovled in the project.

Castlebrooke Investments appointed Squire & Partners in September last year after shifting its focus from a retail-led scheme.

The practice is working on the urban regeneration scheme alongside conservation designers from Belfast-based Consarc Design Group. The development covers a 5ha site besides St. Anne's Cathedral bounded by Royal Avenue, Donegall Street, Lower Garfield Street and Rosemary Street.

Changes to the previous proposal include plans to bring North Street Arcade back into use in a new format, with a space for independent retailers. The height of an office block on the corner of Rosemary Street and North Street has been reduced from 27 to 10 storeys.

The reworked scheme also includes more green spaces, courtyards and residential space, and greater retention of the historic streetscape of North Street and Donegall Street.

Castlebrooke Investements chief executive Neil Young said the changes demonstrated that developer had 'listened to feedback from the city'.

He added: "We are working alongside some of the best designers in the world to deliver revised plans which will work for Belfast. Our aim is to still put Belfast at the forefront of British and European cities with a new urban realm whcih blends the area's history with state-of-the-art design. We believe that Squire & Partners are the best designers to help us bring this to life."

Refurbishment work is already underway to preserve the listed Garfield & North building on Lower Garfield Street.

An exhibition detailing the changes to the outline planning application will be open to the public at the former Mackeys Opticians unit at 6-8 North Street, Belfast, on six dates from 29 July. 

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