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£175M Belfast city transport hub attracts major investors

New transport hub in Belfast city valued at £175M attracts interest of private investors.

A new transport hub worth £175M, which will be situated on an eight-hectare patch of land, is set to replace the Europa Bus Centre and Great Victoria train station complex in Belfast city.

At the MIPIM property investment event in Cannes last month, Belfast City Council said that along with meetings with 20 financial institutions who are showing interest, investors who would consider becoming part of the major public transport project were also present. It is said that these investors have the expertise and track record to consider investment into the adjacent 12-acre regeneration site.

A planning application is due to be submitted this spring, and if this is approved, construction site enabling work is due to start early next year subject to funding. Construction work could start as early as 2019, with the potential to open the scheme is 2021.

In an update to the committee about MIPIM, the council said: “Council are still progressing conversations with investors and developers first engaged in 2016.

“However, this has now been supplemented by meetings with an additional 20 financial institutions and investors that we engaged last month, along with 350 contacts collated overall.

“The growing ambitions for 2018 underpins the requirement to start planning as soon as possible to ensure we can continue to deliver effectively, going above and beyond to ensure the best profile for our city and business opportunities for our Belfast delegation.”

A spokesman for Belfast City Council said: “MIPIM has proved to be an outstanding collaboration between Belfast City Council and the private sector, allowing us to present the city on a global stage to investors and developers.

“Belfast is a hugely compelling proposition for investors and developers, with its highly-talented workforce, infrastructure, lifestyle and other attractions.

“Last year’s visit resulted in the announcement by Signature Living of its plans to open five hotels, creating up to 500 new jobs in Belfast.”

The committee minutes reported that a total of 79 people attended MIPIM, with 38 sponsors contributing £240,350 of private finance.

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