Heathrow looks at logistic hub possibilities in Co Antrim
A team from Heathrow Airport will tomorrow visit three sites in Co Antrim hoping to play a part in its future expansion.
The three sites are among six Northern Ireland locations long-listed for a new logistics hub to aid in Heathrow's third runway expansion.
DUP councillor Paul Reid, outgoing mayor of Mid and East Antrim, said he was eager to show off its credentials as a "manufacturing stronghold".
"As one of the long-listed sites, we welcome this launch as the next step in the Heathrow expansion project and the opportunity to transform the UK construction industry," he said
"We believe Northern Ireland, and Co Antrim in particular, represents an ideal location for one of Heathrow's logistics hubs, acting as a global gateway, and look forward to welcoming Heathrow's representatives to our area.
"Heathrow's planned expansion is a truly national project that would benefit every region by spreading jobs, boosting productivity and modernising the construction industry outside of London and the South East."
The short-listed Co Antrim sites are the former tyre factory Michelin in Ballymena, as well as Global Point Business Park at Corrs Corner in Newtownabbey and Belfast International Airport.
Michelin sold its site to Silverwood Business Park but also gifted 10 acres to Mid and East Antrim Borough Council - the potential base for a Heathrow logistics hub.
MJM Renewables, which owns the former Shackleton Barracks site in Ballykelly, Co Londonderry - which is also a contender - has urged SMEs to attend a summit in Belfast with Heathrow Airport representatives on June 20.
A total of 65 sites across the UK are in the running.