Belfast Telegraph

Developer submits plans to build new apartment complex along the Lagan

A computer generated image of the Laganbank scheme in Belfast
A computer generated image of the Laganbank scheme in Belfast
Ryan McAleer

By Ryan McAleer

The site of a former Belfast nightclub could soon be transformed into a major new apartment complex.

The Benmore Group has submitted its planning application to build 154 apartments along the River Lagan at the former El Divino venue close to the Hilton Hotel and Waterfront Hall.

El Divino was put on the market at the end of 2015.

The three-floor venue was a favourite haunt for celebrities over its six-year lifespan before it closed in 2017.

The £25m Laganbank scheme will feature a mix of one, two and three-bedroom apartments on the edge of the city centre.

Benmore is also involved the £100m Kings Hall Health and Wellbeing Park, the first phase of which was approved last December.

The developer has claimed it will boost the Northern Ireland economy by £47m annually and support 640 full-time equivalent jobs. Benmore says that if approved, the Laganbank scheme will generate 140 jobs during its 16-month construction phase.

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In documents submitted to Belfast City Council last week, the developer said it had altered the design of its proposal considerably on the back of pre-application consultations and discussions with officials.

"The proposed development will represent a significant investment in the future of the area," said the developer," it said.

"It is hoped the redevelopment of this prominent river-front site will bring much needed residential accommodation to the area."

The Benmore Group's investment marks the latest in a series of major projects within the riverside area.

IT company Allstate has recently opened its new £30m headquarters next to Lanyon Place train station, while the £500m redevelopment of the former Sirocco site is already under way across the river Lagan.

Belfast Telegraph