Lower Falls forum update - April 2021

The updates below are the most up to date positions advised to BSC. However, it should be noted that due to the current health emergency things are fast moving, and timescales may slip/change.

Westlink Back Path Environmental Improvement Scheme

The contractor (CivCo) has been on site since 22 June 2020 and work is almost complete. Unfortunately, progress on the site had been delayed for several reasons including drainage, access permissions, additional planning permission and the need to gain DfI approvals at particular areas.  However, these issues have now been resolved.  The contractor is currently monitoring for suitable weather to complete wet pour for the surfaces and completion will soon follow.

Maureen Sheehan Centre (MSC) & surrounding area Environmental Improvements including Roumania Rise Housing Scheme

The MSC Planning Application was approved in October 2018.

Negotiations in relation to the plan for the EI project were revisited and a final design will be presented to the steering group at a meeting scheduled for 28 April.  If approved, this will allow us to officially complete the technical design and instigate the contract tendering process as soon as possible.

An update will then follow regarding the estimated schedule including milestones and expectations moving forward. 

The Roumania Rise Housing Scheme Planning Permission was granted in January 2020.  

As part of the overall improvements to the area Radius has agreed to build 2 units of housing and manage the associated street works at Roumania Rise and the project is included in their 2021/2022 schedule of builds.

Radius has also employed McAdam Design on a contract for the design of the two housing units.  This will progress as a separate procurement exercise to the MSC environmental improvements.  However, there will be a coordinated approach managed by McAdam and timing will be negotiated closer to going on-site. 

Ross Street Flats Redevelopment

DfC approved the Business Case in August 2019.  NIHE lead the Steering Group on the Ross Street Flats and David Brown has continued to provide updates by e-mail during the Covid pandemic and will continue to do so. The following is the latest update provided by David:

NIHE Tenants - Clearance has progressed well since Christmas with only 6 NIHE tenancies now remaining, 4 of which are currently considering alternative accommodation.  

Owner Occupiers/ private rented - The final 2 owner units have recently been agreed with LPS for valuation, and are currently proceeding through the required NIHE internal/legal procedures with solicitors – all other owner/private units have completed and are back in NIHE ownership.

Demolition - First stage of the 2 stage consultant/procurement process is now completed – 2nd stage underway. NIHE are hopeful to have a demolition contractor in place in May 2021; a single demolition contract is being procured for both of the BSC redevelopment schemes @ Ross Street and Corrib flats. Actual demolition dates will be informed by ongoing resident clearance.  NIHE hopes to have full clearance by end of May but this will be reviewed as we progress.

Newbuild scheme - Radius HA have launched a design competition to appoint a Design Team for the newbuild scheme.  Once the Design Team are in place there will be some initial meetings setup to discuss key issues with the subgroup. These are likely to be remote, but may involve a smaller number of individuals meeting on site – tbc based on government/ statutory guidance at the time.

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