Image by Press Eye
Enterprise Trade & Investment Minister Jonathan Bell today announced the establishment of a world class Environmental Resource Park at Giant's Park in Belfast. Jonathan Bell is pictured cutting the first sod for the development with Lord Mayor of Belfast, Cllr Arder Carson and Cllr Declan Boyle.
Enterprise Trade & Investment Minister Jonathan Bell today announced the establishment of a world class Environmental Resource Park at Giant’s Park in Belfast.
Part of Giant’s Park, the biggest regeneration site in Belfast spanning 340 acres, is to be transformed into an Environmental Resource Park by the site’s owner, Belfast City Council, attracting local, national and international investors and delivering physical, social and economic benefits for Northern Ireland.
Jonathan Bell was joined by Lord Mayor of Belfast, Councillor Arder Carson, and Councillor Declan Boyle, Chair of the council’s Strategic Policy and Resources Committee, to formerly cut the sod as development at the site gets underway.
Speaking about the project the Minister said: “The development of a new £9.5million Environmental Resource Park at Giant’s Park is great news for Belfast and for Northern Ireland.
“Bringing together companies working in renewable energy, recycling and other environmental technologies the Environmental Resource Park will develop an innovative Cleantech business cluster, the first of its kind here. This has the potential to make Northern Ireland a world leader in investment in green technology and attract further opportunities.
“It has the potential to create up to 400 green collar jobs, enhance Northern Ireland’s economic infrastructure, encourage innovation, collaborative research & development and develop the green economy.
“The project is part funded through a European funding programme that specifically supports local economic development. It is a great example of how local councils can bring forward projects that will specifically address the economic needs of their area and develop solutions that will not only benefit locals businesses but also help them attract inward investment.”
This project is jointly funded by Invest Northern Ireland (£2million), Belfast City Council (£3.5million) and the European Regional Development Fund under the Sustainable Competitiveness Programme for Northern Ireland under the Local Economic Development (LED) Measure (£4million).
Lord Mayor of Belfast, Councillor Arder Carson said: “The development of infrastructure to create an Environmental Resource Park at Giant’s Park is the latest project to be delivered through Belfast City Council’s Investment Programme.
“This is a welcome first step in turning our ambitious plans for Giant’s Park into a reality, transforming a former landfill facility into an environmentally sustainable asset. As the biggest development site in Belfast, this area offers significant potential to deliver jobs, and demonstrates the council's commitment towards the green economy strand of the Programme for Government and building a resilient city of the future.
“The Environmental Resource Park will open up the site to private sector investors specialising in providing cutting edge solutions to global environmental issues, and in doing so create an exemplar cluster of Cleantech environmental businesses.”
Councillor Declan Boyle, Chair of Strategic Policy and Resources Committee: “Our Investment Programme vowed to work in partnership with others to bring forward projects which could act as a catalyst for further economic growth.
“Citizens will feel the benefits with a significant number of new jobs created in a rapidly expanding sector, as well as training and other opportunities during construction. There will be new career opportunities in the long term, while new businesses in the environmental, renewable energy and innovative waste management fields will make a real difference in terms of our future.
“In addition, there are endless opportunities for businesses within the Park to work together to improve productivity and deliver even greater economic growth and competitiveness, waste reduction and significantly reduced environmental impacts."
The LED measure, part funded by the European Regional Development Fund, has enabled councils to help address the particular needs of businesses in their area. Invest NI has worked closely with councils across Northern Ireland to develop initiatives that support the needs of local businesses, resulting in 124 council led projects being assisted by Invest NI through the EU Sustainable Competitiveness Programme.