The Commons, Donaghadee

Consultation: The Commons Masterplan, Donaghadee

The Council has appointed AECOM as a landscape design led multi-agency disciplinary team to prepare a Masterplan for the Commons.

The Masterplan will seek to re-image the area as a great destination that can strengthen the market positioning and appeal of Donaghadee – both within Ards and North Down but also across Northern Ireland. 

The need for Commons Masterplan was identified in the Donaghadee Town Centre Masterplan, which sets out the strategic vision for the town as agreed following extensive local consultation.  The realisation of the Town Centre Masterplan continues to be overseen by the Donaghadee Town Advisory Group and the document is ‘live’ and flexible. Read the Donaghadee Town Centre Masterplan at Regeneration | Ards and North Down Borough Council

Within the Town Centre Masterplan, the Commons is identified as a key access point, a significant developmental opportunity, a hub for leisure and recreation and an opportunity for heritage and tourism products.

The draft Masterplan for the Commons has been developed by AECOM in conjunction with the Council and following engagement with several key stakeholder groups.  This engagement has helped to develop a greater knowledge of local aspirations for the development of the Commons, an improved understanding of the site and identified challenges and opportunities.

From this several proposals for The Commons Coastal Park have now been identified.

Consultation Event

The Council is hosting a public consultation in Donaghadee Community Centre where the project team will be available to present the final draft proposals and take any relevant questions.

The date and time for the consultation is:

  • Tuesday 18th October 2022 (4pm-8pm) at Donaghadee Community Centre

Please note a brief presentation will be made on the hour during the session.

Summary of Proposals

Donaghadee has a long maritime heritage with key assets in the harbour and RNLB Sir Samuel Kelly.  It also has a wealth of listed buildings, structures and monuments which give the town its unique traditional character.  Conservation Area status has protected the built heritage within its boundary.

The coastline is also a major natural heritage asset protected through RAMSAR, ASSI and Outer Ards SPA designations.  The town has also benefited from retaining its open spaces of which the Commons is the most significant. This provides a unique opportunity to create a linear coastal park of local and regional significance which will appeal to both locals and visitors building on its combined maritime, built and natural heritage assets to create a unique and distinctive visitor experience as part of the popular Mourne Coastal Route.

The Concept Masterplan offers:

- A new mixed use Visitor Hub with a primary focus on Donaghadee’s impressive history
- Creation of a modern, high quality and sustainable Coastal Park that is a hub for leisure and recreation providing connections to the Town and into the wider greenway networks currently being developed
- Eco trail exploration of the old railway line
- Integration of the Marina / Boatyard / Tennis / Bowls clubs into the wider park proposals
- High end recreational activities such as a Glamping site, an in ground pump track, skate park and natural play area / outdoor gym to encourage all ages

It is important to note that these are draft concepts and no decisions about any of the proposed developments have been made.

Submit Feedback via Online Survey

Feedback on the draft Masterplan can be submitted via our online survey. Your feedback is important and we look forward to receiving your input: Complete The Commons, Donaghadee Public Survey - Ards and North Down Borough Council - Citizen Space

The survey opens on 18 October and will close on 1 November 2022.