The Queen’s Parade area of Bangor has been largely derelict for almost 20 years and its regeneration has been an area of focus throughout this time.
The site, which occupies a prominent position overlooking the main Queen's Parade coastal road and Bangor Marina is, and has been, visually unattractive - regarded by many to be a key factor diminishing the vitality and vibrancy of the entire town centre.
Several attempts to take forward a viable regeneration scheme within the private sector have failed over the years, giving cause for the Department to take the lead as a priority project. Approval to take forward this major scheme was granted in 2013, to the then Department for Social Development, and work commenced to acquire all the required properties within the Queen’s Parade site boundary. A number of properties were acquired through a Vesting Order in January 2017, which completed the Departments acquisition of all the required land and property to take forward the scheme.
Planning approval for the Queen’s Parade development was awarded to the Department in July 2015.
View the video to find out more from some of those involved;
Development Brief & Agreement
The Queen’s Parade site was then offered for sale by way of a Development Brief in December 2016, and following a tender process, Bangor Marine were appointed Preferred Bidder in October 2017.
The Department, Ards & North Down Borough Council and Bangor Marine reached formal agreement on the terms that formed a Development Agreement in May 2019.
Bangor Marine Limited is a partnership between Karl Group and Farrans, created specially to deliver the Queen’s Parade project.
- Developer Appointed for Queen’s Parade, Bangor (14 May 2019)
The Development Agreement includes a number of key milestones which include achieving full Planning Permission and target-dates for the completion of four main phases of the redevelopment. It is expected that once construction works commence, it will complete within five years.
A Project Board, comprising representatives from the Department, Ards & North Down Borough Council, Strategic Investment Board, Land & Property Services and the developer, has been established to oversee the governance and delivery of the Development Scheme, ensuring compliance with the conditions and timescales set within the Development Agreement.
This Board will meet regularly throughout the duration of the project.
Following the series of public consultation events, held during the summer of 2019, Bangor Marine worked to develop their planning application for the site. This was submitted to the Ards and North Down Borough Council (planning application number, LA06/2020/0097/F) and was approved by the Council’s Planning Committee on 26th January 2021.
The proposals for the site include; Marine Gardens Public Realm combining External Events Space, Cafes, Sheltered Promenade & Kiosks, Beach, Seafront Lawns, Children’s Play Area & Water Feature; a Hotel; a Destination/Cinema Building; Residential Units; Commercial/Retail/Restaurant Space; Office Space; a Play Zone; Refurbishment of Existing Commercial Properties; basement Car Park; and Marketplace & Courtyard Squares.
The detail of the planning application is available on the planningni portal.
The detail provided by the Planning Case Officer and scrutinised by the Ards and North Down Borough Council Planning Committee is available.
An audio record of the Committee meeting is also available.
On 26 January, Minister Hargey welcomed this as a significant step in the right direction for the regeneration of Bangor.
The Department for Infrastructure has concluded its consideration of the Queen’s Parade planning application, and has returned it to the Ards and North Down Borough Council to progress.
CGI Images of the proposed completed scheme
Work is ongoing between the Department for Communities, the Ards and North Down Borough Council, and the developer, Bangor Marine, to develop a joint communications and stakeholder engagement plan, to inform the local community of progress as we enter the next phases of the Queen’s Parade Development. Part of this work involves Bangor Marine sharing information and updates on their website.