Lisburn hotel and housing plan ‘could create 9,000 jobs’

Major plans to transform parts of Lisburn have been submitted with proposals to build a riverside park, healthcare facilities, hotel, and houses on a large area in the south of the city.

Tuesday, 23rd March 2021, 11:33 am
Developers say the submitted plans could transform a large section of Lisburn near Sprucefield

The application was brought forward to a Special Planning Committee meeting of the Lisburn and Castlereagh City Council this week.

The £250m development, lodged by Neptune Carleton LLP, will see a “sustainable mixed use neighbourhood” built, if approved, near Blaris.

The plan includes 1,300 dwellings, 770,000 sq. ft. of commercial floorspace and a new 1.6km road and bridge over the River Lagan to connect the M1/A101 at Sprucefield.

The masterplan for the neighbourhood will see the creation of a riverside park alongside the Lagan with landscaped and woodland walkways connecting to a range of new housing.

A 200-bed hotel, community hub of local shops and facilities will be created following the realignment and upgrade to Blaris Road.

Agent Clyde Shanks, on behalf of the applicant, said the plan would bring a “high-quality” and “much needed” expansion to Lisburn South.

It’s also estimated that at least 10% of the total number of residential housing (130 units) would be used for affordable housing.

Meanwhile, the council officers said the new neighbourhood would generate £193million to the economy. Around 9,000 jobs would be created over the next 20 years because of the ambitious plan, according to LCCC officers.

The development drew three objections.

Objectors said the proposals would have an impact of existing wildlife,  increase traffic and have a potential negative impact on the character of the area.

Several councillors also raised their concerns. Alderman James Tinsley questioned whether the land would be susceptible to flooding, asking if the land would be left as a floodplain.

In his response, agent Clyde Shanks said: “When you look at the riverside park aspects, it’s certainly hoped that you would effectively have towpath-style, pedestrian cycle connection in there.

“It’s very much something that the residents in and around the wider Lisburn area would benefit from. What we intend to do is to make it a really key leisure corridor where residents in the northern part of the site can really utilise it.”Owen Gawith, Chairman of the committee, said a final decision would be made in the coming weeks.