Belfast Telegraph

This bridge needs a name... you have a few hours to think of one

BY MICHELLE SMITH

Prince George, Victoria, Titanic Bridge... the bid to name the new bridge planned for Victoria Park in east Belfast is drawing to an end.

The public are being urged to get their thinking caps on, but to make it snappy because the closing date for naming the structure, which will be constructed as part of the Connswater Community Greenway project, is midnight tonight.

The pedestrian and cycle bridge is part of Phase One of the project which will provide a much-needed connection from Victoria Park to Airport Road, linking people to the Harbour Estate and Titanic Quarter.

East Belfast Partnership's Stephanie Meenagh said she hopes now that the heat is on, the public will come up with some great ideas for naming a bridge that they will walk on for years to come.

"We have had a few great ones so far but I believe there are still some cracking ideas to come.

"I can't say what the names suggested are but so far they have been based around the history and geography of the area, our ship-building and aerospace industries, the Titanic, royalty and the animals that live in Victoria Park.

"The park used to have a swimming pool so we have had some suggestions around that.

"Some suggestions have been based on local activists while others stem from fiction and literature linked with east Belfast.

"It is such a rich place culturally and historically so the suggestions have all been pretty interesting," she says

Stephanie revealed she has been "overwhelmed" by the response and that the five-strong panel – made up of representatives from the council's Parks and Leisure department, Victoria Park Run, Belfast Harbour Commission, Connswater Community Greenway Trust and east Belfast community organisations, have a difficult task ahead of them as they join forces to pick the winner.

The Connswater Community Greenway is a £35m investment which will connect the green and open spaces in east Belfast through the 9km linear greenway.

"Plans for the bridge at Victoria Park where unveiled earlier this year as part of phase one of the project.

"This initial £4m contract, awarded to local company BSG Civil Engineering, will focus on Orangefield and Victoria Parks, creating 3km of new paths, three new bridges for pedestrians and cyclists – including the bridge at Victoria Park – landscaping, and public realm work such as street furniture and lighting.

So what will the new bridge be called?

People can submit their entries online by logging onto www.communitygreenway.co.uk/NametheBridge

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