Aran Blackbourne of Bangor Marine met with the Minister and outlined the company’s plans for a mixed-use development on the site, including new homes, a hotel, events space, public realm, cafes and restaurants.
Commenting on the funding, Mr Blackbourne said:
“The City of Bangor has received a very positive boost from the UK Government Levelling Up Fund, and we welcome the news that £9.8m has been ringfenced for Bangor Marine to deliver the Marine Gardens as part of our Queen’s Parade regeneration project.
“Public realm space has a critical part to play in the success of all towns and cities, providing a setting for community life, enhancing cohesiveness and adding to the welcoming vibrancy of a destination. We have always said that we want to create a place for the people of Bangor to feel proud of. Marine Gardens has a very important role to play in this aspiration and we look forward to bringing this to reality.”
The Department for Communities and Ards and North Down Borough Council are partners with Bangor Marine in the delivery of the Queen’s Parade scheme.
The Minister’s visit took place at Bangor Court House, which has recently been restored by Open House into a music and arts venue that provides a permanent home for the charity. It overlooks the part of Bangor that will be transformed with the Levelling Up Funding.
This funding news comes in the same week that Ards and North Down Borough Council revealed it has been awarded £40 million of funding for the Bangor Waterfront Development as part of the Belfast Region City Deal. Bangor Waterfront is a complementary investment to the Queen’s Parade plans, which will see the redevelopment of a two-mile stretch of coastline from Skippingstone Beach to Ballyholme, with the aim of delivering a significant boost to tourism and encouraging further investment.
The Mayor of Ards and North Down, Councillor Karen Douglas, said:
“This is a significant week for Bangor with the dual funding announcements for Queen’s Parade and Bangor Waterfront. As they both roll out over the coming years, I am very much looking forward to seeing our new City firmly back on the map as a place to live, work and visit and enjoy.”
For more information, visit ardsandnorthdown.gov.uk.