The contract to build the multi- million pound Connswater Community Greenway in east Belfast has been put out to tender in Europe.
East Belfast Partnership, which manages the project, said it will this week advertise in the Official Journal of the European Union for a contractor.
The contract includes the construction of a combined Community Greenway and in partnership with Department of Agriculture and Rural Development Rivers Agency, and major flood alleviation works.
The Community Greenway has a value of around £23 million and consists of 19km of shared pedestrian and cycle paths, 26 bridges, riverside paths, cantilevered boardwalks, lighting and CCTV, as well as various public realm and river enhancement works.
The total estimated value of the contract is between £30m and £39m.
Connswater Community Greenway programme manager Wendy Langham said she anticipates that the successful contractor will be appointed by the middle of 2010 with construction work commencing September 2010.
“We are delighted to have reached this key milestone in the project and we expect there to be a lot of interest from contractors in this scheme,” she said.
“Contractors will be asked to fill in a pre-qualification questionnaire, detailing their experience and ability, from which a number of contractors will be selected and invited to tender for the work.”
East Belfast Partnership won a Big Lottery Living Landmarks Programme grant for £23m to develop the linear park through East Belfast allowing people to travel along the course of the Connswater, Knock and Loop rivers, from the Castlereagh Hills to Belfast Lough.
It believes that on completion the Connswater Community Greenway will create a safe, welcoming and open public space for residents and visitors to east Belfast.