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Regeneration in Belfast

Grey to Green City Centre Fund

  • Grey to Green

    Making the city centre greener

    A Bolder Vision for Belfast identifies the importance of transforming critical parts of Belfast to create a safer, greener, and more accessible city.

    We invited expressions of interest from businesses and organisations for two greening grants:

    • The Demonstrator Project with up to £50,000 in funding through the Department for Infrastructure Blue Green Infrastructure fund, to deliver a meanwhile, publicly accessible, city centre social farm or garden, on a council owned site for a period of around 18 months; and
    • The City Centre Greening Fund to deliver greening projects within the city centre.

    Demonstrator Project

    The Conservation Volunteers have been selected to use a section of the Belfast Stories site on Royal Avenue to develop a community garden, using polytunnels, raised planters and vegetable beds. They’ll also deliver an extensive engagement programme, working with range of minority groups including adults and young people struggling with mental health issues.

    The garden will encourage biodiversity, help to combat pollution, and make this urban space more attractive, pleasant, and liveable. We’re also hopeful that the young people and adults involved in creating the space will experience real and lasting benefits in terms of better mental health and wellbeing.

    Grey to Green Demonstrator project fund objectives

    The demonstrator project is one of the key actions to come out of the Belfast Healthy Cities ‘Greening the City’ workshop in August 2022 and is part of the ‘Greening the City’ Advisory Group’s ongoing work.

    The primary objective is to deliver a city centre greening project that encompasses social farming or gardening or community food growing, drawing on the Advisory Group’s expertise, and to share learning from the project, with proactive community engagement to encourage a sense of community ownership.

    We’re creating shared learning on what does and does not work for this type of project in Belfast city centre.

    The Greening the City Advisory Group agreed to focus on the following three key themes in a bid to make the project exemplary:

    1. Urban farming or agriculture, and how this can be encouraged in Belfast and in the city centre.
    2. Community engagement and creating a sense of ownership with stakeholders including local residents, businesses, schools, and commuters or visitors.
    3. Education and learning, including how the demonstrator project can help people learn about food growing, urban agriculture, horticulture, nutrition, and links to health and wellbeing.

    Organisations represented on the Greening the City Advisory Group are:

    • Belfast City Council
    • Belfast Health and Social Care Trust
    • Belfast Healthy Cities
    • Belfast Hills Partnership
    • Department for Infrastructure
    • EastSide Partnership
    • Keep Northern Ireland Beautiful
    • Northern Ireland Environment Link
    • Northern Ireland Housing Executive
    • Outdoor Recreation NI
    • Public Health Agency
    • Queen's University Belfast
    • RSPB NI
    • Social Farms and Gardens
    • West Belfast Partnership Board

    City Centre Greening Fund:

    • Killultagh Estates will create a Living Wall at 32-38 Linenhall Street; a vertical greening project on the façade of a prominent nine storey office building, in the heart of Belfast city centre.
    • Maritime Belfast Trust will deliver the Queen’s Quay Greening Project, transforming a vacant area of land into an attractive green space through planting and helping to improve connectivity and wayfinding on the Maritime Mile.
    • Belfast South Community Resources will be creating ‘Sandy Glade’ on a derelict site at the corner of Sandy Row and Wellwood Street, planting a glade of native trees and pollinator shrubs and a living green wall, landscaping the glade with ornamental sand and gravel areas.
  • Further information

    For further information on our Grey to Green initiative, email: belfasti@belfastcity.gov.uk

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