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Belfast City Council buys Clarendon House for £24.7m: Plans to build new office complex

By John Mulgrew

Published 20/05/2015

An image of what the new office space may look like
An image of what the new office space may look like

Belfast City Council has purchased Clarendon House for £24.7m with plans to knock it down and build a new 100,000 sq ft office complex.

It’s claimed the deal - which has been described as the “most significant office development in the city for ten years” – will create hundreds of jobs during its construction.

The council has said the major development alongside construction firm McAleer & Rushe will be funded at “no cost to the ratepayer by efficiencies achieved from rationalising the council’s existing office estate and selling a number of surplus redundant buildings.”

And planning approval is already in place for the new office complex.

The building was built back the 1970s and was bought by Cookstown-based construction firm McAleer and Rushe last year.

The new office scheme will be designed by Todd Architects.

Declan Boyle, chairman of the council’s Strategic Policy and Resources Committee said it was “delighted to be working on this development in partnership with McAleer & Rushe”.

“This is further significant investment in the city centre by Belfast City Council, following on from our £150m investment programme which was launched in 2012.

“It is part of our approach to maximise efficiencies by clustering our staff and services within close proximity.”

Clarendon House at Adelaide Street in the city centre is close to Belfast City Hall, and the Cecil Ward Building on Linenhall Street, where the new Belfast Planning Service and the Consumer Advice Centre are now located.

A planning application had initially been filed by McAleer & Rushe and Todd Architects back in October 2014 to demolish the existing building and develop a10-storey replacement office building.

That proposed building was reduced to nine floors, while previously proposed car parking spaces at ground level were removed during the planning process.

The application was approved by Belfast City Council on May 19.

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