£700m City Deal investment
Belfast Region City Deal partners have said that confirmation of the NI Executive’s match funding of new investment for infrastructure, regeneration, and tourism projects will help the region’s economy recover from the effects of Covid-19.
The announcement from the Finance Minister brings the overall investment in the Belfast Region City Deal to £850 million, including £150m from the Belfast Region City Deal partners.
The Executive has also agreed to provide up to an additional £100 million for complementary projects where partners can demonstrate a viable capital project which is complementary to the City/Growth Deal proposals.
The Belfast City Region includes Belfast City Council and the surrounding councils of Antrim and Newtownabbey, Ards and North Down, Lisburn and Castlereagh, Mid and East Antrim and Newry, Mourne and Down. This unique partnership also involves Queen’s and Ulster universities, Belfast Metropolitan College and the regional Further Education colleges.
Mayor of Ards and North Down, Alderman Bill Keery said;
“The announcement of this new funding package is a very welcome boost to the Belfast Region City Deal in the exceptional times we currently face.”
“I am excited about the opportunities that the Belfast Region City Deal can provide for Ards and North Down. It presents a vision of inclusive economic growth that will deliver more and better jobs; have a positive impact on our most deprived communities and offer a balanced spread of benefits across the area.”
“For Ards and North Down, the deal presents an opportunity for us to access significant capital funding for a range of exciting projects, including new greenways and coastal paths, the re-imagining of Ballyholme Beach, the redevelopment of Bangor seafront as well as a new Enterprise Park and Innovation Hub, linked to a regional innovators network.”
“This additional funding marks a positive step towards a post Covid-19 economic recovery plan, ultimately supporting our vision to make Ards and North Down a great place to live, work, visit and invest.”
It is anticipated that the Belfast Region City Deal will deliver more than 20 projects that will help grow the Belfast region’s business strengths in life and health sciences; ICT, digital and creative industries, and advanced manufacturing. It will also support digital development and tourism-led regeneration across the entire region, underpinned by infrastructure developments and investment in skills to connect people to jobs and services.
These projects will help to create new types of jobs for the future, underpinned by re-skilling programmes, by focusing on the region’s competitive strengths. They will also have a positive impact on the most deprived communities, delivering a balanced spread of benefits across the region.