Newry, Mourne and Down District Council’s plans for a Civic and Regional Hub in Newry have reached a significant new stage of development.

The PQQ (Pre-Qualification Questionnaire) process is now underway for the provision of a contractor responsible for construction. The process, which identifies suitable suppliers, will conclude with invitations to tender for the Belfast Region City Deal (BRCD) supported scheme.

It is anticipated that construction work on the Newry City Centre Regeneration project will begin in June 2024.

Newry, Mourne and Down District Council Chairperson, Cllr Valerie Harte, said, “I welcome the latest progress on plans for a new civic building for Newry. The new visuals which have also been released show that we will have an administrative centre that reflects Newry’s city status. It is one that will also send the right message to potential investors.

“The PQQ process is an important milestone, and I am pleased to see this project on track to help regenerate Newry City Centre alongside our planned new Theatre and Conference Centre and Newry City Park.”

In March 2023 the Southern Health and Social Care Trust confirmed its purchase of the Monaghan Row Buildings from the Council. The new Civic and Regional Hub will bring together Council staff who are currently accommodated in several buildings across the city and the sale of Monaghan Row helps facilitate these plans.

Gerard Murray, Director of the Department for Communities Regional Development Office said, “The Department for Communities is continuing to work with Newry, Mourne and Down District Council on the exciting urban regeneration projects supported by the Belfast Region City Deal.

“The Department for Communities welcomes the start of the PQQ process for the Civic and Regional Hub and will engage with the Council as its plans to regenerate Newry City Centre continue to progress.”

In January 2023 a BRCD Contract for Funding was agreed for Newry City Centre Regeneration Projects supported by the Deal, which includes the Theatre and Conference Centre. £5 million BRCD funding has been allocated for Public Realm at the Theatre and Conference Centre and Civic and Regional Hub, along with £3 million for a Grade A Office Accommodation Fund. The Council is also investing £34.9m in its Newry City Centre Regeneration programme of works.