Northern Ireland

Five 'shared space' projects get £29.1m offer from EU body

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Image caption The funding is being offered by the Special EU Programmes Body

A total of €32.4m (£29.1m) of EU funding is being offered to create five new "shared space" projects in Northern Ireland and County Monaghan.

Four of the projects that have been selected are in Northern Ireland.

They are based in south Belfast, Ballycastle, County Antrim, the Waterside area of Londonderry, and Pomeroy, County Tyrone.

The project in the Republic of Ireland is based in Monaghan town.

The money is being offered by the Special EU Programmes Body (SEUPB).

'All sections of the community'

Gina McIntyre, SEUPB chief executive, said that each of the projects will be "specifically designed so that they can be used by all sections of the community".

Match-funding for each of the projects is being provided by the Department for Communities in Northern Ireland and the Department of Rural and Community Development in the Republic of Ireland.

The SEUPB said the Waterside Shared Village project in Derry has been offered €8m to "create a multi-faceted shared space facility within the Waterside area".

It will incorporate "a central community hub building, surrounded by a sports complex".

The project will be led by Derry City and Strabane District Council.

Image caption The Waterside Shared Village project will be led by Derry City and Strabane District Council

The Newforge Community Development Trust has been offered approximately €5.8m "to develop a 15-acre site located beside the River Lagan and Newforge Lane in south Belfast".

Led by the Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI), the project "aims to transform the site through the provision of enhanced indoor and outdoor sporting facilities".

The Ballycastle Shared Services project has been offered €3.1m to upgrade existing (and develop new) sports facilities on the Shared Education Campus (SEC) in the town.

The Connecting Pomeroy project has been offered about €6m to "encourage greater levels of cross-community contact within the local area".

The SEUPB said the project "will enhance the look and feel of the centre of the village, create a suite of new community facilities and boost outdoor and tourism opportunities through the development of a 'magic forest'".

The Monaghan Peace Campus, based in Monaghan town, has been offered €9.5m to create a new shared community space comprising a four-storey community building.

In May last year, the European Commission indicated it would continue funding cross-border projects in Northern Ireland after Brexit.

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