Belfast Telegraph

Wednesday 16 April 2014

Court tussle could close Odyssey car park to commuters

A row between management bodies at Belfast’s Odyssey centre over car-parking is to be settled in the courts.

The proceedings represent the latest fall-out between the Odyssey Trust — the landlord for the entertainment centre — and Sheridan Millennium, a company headed by well-known businessman Peter Curistan.

Sheridan, which rents out the restaurant and other outlets within the showpiece centre, has challenged use of the car park by Belfast commuters.

It has obtained a temporary High Court injunction preventing parking there before 9am by anyone other than Odyssey employees. A full hearing in the case is scheduled to take place next Tuesday.

In a statement yesterday, the Odyssey Trust said: “We are obviously treating this injunction very seriously, though we will be contesting the grounds on which it is based at the hearing next week.

“In the meantime, we will continue to facilitate and welcome the many visitors who are planning to visit the Odyssey for the great events scheduled over the next few days.”

Mr Curistan’s company is in charge of the Odyssey Pavilion, home to several restaurant and bar businesses.

It claims the outlets are losing out on customers because of all-day parking by commuters seeking to avoid higher parking prices in the city centre.

Mr Curistan said last night: “It is very regrettable that Sheridan Millennium has had to take this action.

“The tenants of the Pavilion have been extremely inconvenienced by the commuter problem.”

The Odyssey centre was Belfast’s landmark Millennium development, partly funded by public money. The Sheridan group was the private sector partner in the project. Its relations with the Trust had become badly soured by 2002.

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