MLA calls for more investment in city

Lagan Valley Assembly Member Paul Givan has called for more investment into Lisburn after challenging the Social Development Minister to support new projects in the City and other villages following completion of the City Centre Public Realm scheme.

Paul Givan

During an Assembly question to Social Development Minister, Mervyn Storey, Mr Givan asked of further plans following the completion of Market Square.

The Minister outlined the need in other areas including linkages to Bow Street, Laganbank Quarter and Dromore Town centre.

“The Lisburn public realm scheme was designed to create a world-class space with unique and interesting features and was introduced to showcase the retail offering in the city and to improve the pedestrian experience by reducing the dominance of the car in the city’s streets,” said Mr Storey. “The transformed environment will be a great driver for investment, tourism and economic prosperity. The poor-quality environment in a number of streets in the city centre has become even more apparent following the recent public realm improvements, demonstrating that there is need for further intervention. My Department, in conjunction with the council, is exploring this potential in considering a Lisburn linkages project that would see public realm improvement works to the streets that link to the Market Square and Bow Street area. Naturally, the project will be subject to the necessary positive economic appraisal and to the availability of future finance.”

Thanking the Minister for his recent visit to Lisburn to launch the new public realm work in the Bow Street and Market Square area, Mr Givan said: “Having questioned him about further plans across the constituency I am pleased that he has identified other areas which would benefit greatly from schemes.

“The potential for a Lisburn linkages projects is a scheme which would greatly improve the secondary streets and those which lead to the City Centre.

“Minister Storey has also stated his departments support to work with Lisburn & Castlereagh City Council to achieve the regeneration scheme in the Laganbank Quarter with a consultancy team being appointed soon to take this forward. It is vital that we build upon the recently completed public realm scheme and with new owners of Lisburn Square momentum is moving in the right direction. The development of these schemes can assist in improving investment opportunities in Lisburn, creating a more attractive area to work and do business which can bring more jobs to Lisburn.”