Belfast Telegraph

Maze site is backed to boost building industry

By Clare Weir

The former Maze Prison site could help revive the embattled construction industry and pour tens of millions of pounds into the economy through building and infrastructure investment, according to the developers of the new Balmoral Park.

Lisburn company OCP Ireland is calling on local suppliers, contractors and businesses to register their company details, saying that work on the new site, to comprise a 65-acre exhibition and event space, could provide contract opportunities for another decade.

Balmoral Park is now the largest construction site in Northern Ireland and OCP Ireland is already managing nine local construction companies and 24 material supply companies to support the initial infrastructure delivery for the 2013 Balmoral Show, which is coming to its new home from King's Hall in Belfast in just five weeks' time.

Further contractors will be required as construction continues at pace to prepare for the 2014 show and beyond.

Future plans for Balmoral Park include a 'Centre of Rural Excellence' which is already being heralded as the future heart of the Balmoral Show.

A national exhibition space and a centre for equine excellence are also among a range of other projects being considered as part of the wider Maze development and transport infrastructure.

OCP Ireland has already overseen the delivery of the infrastructure to date including laying 253,000 sq metres of surfaces, including 32,000 sq metres of grass for the arena areas, excavating and recycling 26,500 tonnes of concrete, installing 13,000 metres of underground services and landscaping 15,000 sq metres of banking including over 10,000 trees and plants within the site.

Ross Ellerby from OCP Ireland said that the numbers illustrate the sheer scale of the site.

"We are working closely with the Royal Ulster Agricultural Society and our professional design team to manage the design, procurement and delivery processes for Balmoral Park," he said.

"We would encourage local suppliers and contractors to register their interest at

"OCP Ireland are also looking for experienced staff with the right skills to deliver Balmoral Park and other future complex projects."

Belfast Telegraph