Committee Visits Coleraine to See Town Centre Regeneration
Date: Thursday, 20 June 2013
Reference: SD 06/12/13
The Assembly’s Committee for Social Development today visited Coleraine Borough Council. Following their meeting, Members received a briefing from Council officials on local Neighbourhood Renewal schemes.
The Committee also visited the Waterside area of the town which is to benefit from the Coleraine Revitalise Programme which is facilitated by Coleraine Borough Council and heard from the Programmes’ Steering Group about the regeneration opportunities that the initiative provides.
Chairperson of the Committee for Social Development Alex Maskey MLA said: “My Committee has been very impressed by what it has seen and heard in Coleraine today. The benefits of these schemes are clear to see and underline that effective partnerships are essential if continued progress is to be made in revitalising our town centres and neighbourhoods. Coupled with the necessary energy and vision, the projects the Committee heard about today can help to establish vibrant economic centres and sustainable communities.
“The Committee was particularly interested to hear more about the recently launched I’M HAPPY project. The project is provided under the umbrella of Neighbourhood Renewal in conjunction with the University of Ulster, Coleraine and helps young people in disadvantaged areas to develop new skills in the field of computing, a growing area of employment. This type of initiative adds to the sense of an area working coherently towards a sustainable future.
Mr Maskey concluded: “Importantly, we must consider how the experience and skills developed as a result of these projects can be shared beyond specific council areas so that the local investment ultimately benefits all of our people and communities”
Notes to Editors:
Neighbourhood Renewal: Neighbourhood Renewal has been highlighted by Government as a long-term programme based approach to tackle deprivation and close the quality of life gap within the 10% most deprived wards in Northern Ireland. The Department for Social Development (DSD) has overall responsibility for implementing the Neighbourhood Renewal Strategy across Northern Ireland. As of July 2009 Coleraine Borough Council became the lead delivery agent for Neighbourhood Renewal within the Coleraine area.
Revitalise Coleraine Initiative: The Revitalise Coleraine Initiative is funded by the Department for Social Development who will provide £250,000 with Coleraine Borough Council providing an additional £28,180. The scheme is aimed at improving the overall appearance of the area and will concentrate on shop frontages and derelict sites in the Waterside and Bridge Street areas of Coleraine
IM HAPPY project: This project entitled Improving Hopes, Aspirations, Potential and Prospects in the Youth (IM HAPPY) involves the School of Computing and Information Engineering (SCIE) at the University of Ulster, Coleraine. The aim of the project is to introduce learners of all ages to the creative art of designing, developing, documenting and presenting computer applications and is targeted at the Neighbourhood Renewal residents of Ballysally, Millburn and Churchlands areas.