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Action plan for Belfast city centre takes shape

Words: Roger Milne
Belfast city centre

Belfast City Council has joined forces with two Stormont departments to work up an action plan for the heart of the capital.

The aim is to create a more attractive, accessible, safe and vibrant city centre.

This initiative follows a joint study by the city council, Department for Infrastructure and Department for Communities that reimagines the city centre in 15 years’ time as a greener, more walkable and connected core that would be more people and family-focused.

The Bolder Vision document spells out the intention to make the Belfast of 2035:

  • “a healthy, shared, vibrant and sustainable environment, where people of all ages will choose to live, work and visit”;
  • “a city that prioritises walking, cycling and public transport”;
  • “lively and safe, with green streets that celebrate our built heritage with new leisure spaces and a variety of cultural activities”; and
  • “a city with barriers to movement removed, ensuring that communities across the city are well connected to the city core with the River Lagan a key focus with multiple crossing points and activities along its banks”.

A blueprint for public consultation should be published later this year.

Belfast's Lord Mayor, Alderman Frank McCoubrey, said: “Even before this pandemic, cities across the UK and Europe have been examining how they diversify their city centres to ensure long-term resilience and wellbeing for all, as we respond to the urgent need to create a more sustainable, climate-resilient city to address issues around flooding, congestion and air quality.”

Image credit l iStock