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Belfast's former linen warehouse to become office development

Published 26/07/2016

The building in Bedford Street in Belfast. Pic Future Belfast
The building in Bedford Street in Belfast. Pic Future Belfast

The listed Ewart Building, a former linen warehouse in Belfast city centre, is to be developed into offices after being vacant for more than 25 years.

Belfast City Council’s Planning Committee granted planning permission on Tuesday night for phase two of the Bedford Square development.

This includes the conservation, alteration, refurbishment and extension of the building.

Belfast City Council said the plans include a new 17-storey tower, comprising 18,000 square feet of office space, to the rear of the property.  The scheme also includes the completion of a new civic square on the Bedford Street site.

Councillor Peter Johnston, Chair of the Planning Committee, said: "One of the jobs of the council, as the local planning authority, is to strike that often fine balance between meeting the needs of a forward-thinking modern city with preserving the more important aspects of its heritage,” commented.

"It is great to see this important historic building being brought back into use, and in a way which will see it play its part in the continued development and prosperity of the city, just as it did when it was first built in 1870."

Stephen Surphlis from developers McAleer & Rushe told the BBC: "Together with our Maldron Hotel and QUB student accommodation on the adjoining Brunswick Street site, this will make a huge contribution to the regeneration of Belfast's Linen Quarter and this part of the city."

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