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Belfast construction firm Farrans awarded contract for £50m City Quays 3 scheme

An artist's impression of how the new City Quays 3 will look

BUILDING work is due to start this month on the north's tallest building, creating over 500 local construction jobs.

The £50 million Belfast City Quays 3 office scheme, granted planning permission in January, will accommodate 1,800 people once complete and represents Belfast Harbour's largest development project to date.

The construction contract for the 16-storey building has been awarded to Dunmurry-headquartered, Farrans and is due for completion by the end of 2021.

The project, designed by Belfast-based architects RPP, will be built to the BREEAM Excellent sustainability standard, placing it in the top 10 per cent of sustainable new buildings in the UK.

The latest portion of the 20-acre City Quays waterfront scheme, which is already home to 1,100 office workers, will bring total investment up to £125m from Belfast Harbour. The development is already home to two Grade A offices a 900-space multi-storey carpark and the AC Marriott Hotel.

The scheme currently houses blue chip companies including Baker McKenzie, ITV and TPICAP, with strong interest expected in the new office building.

Joe O’Neill, Belfast Harbour CEO, said they are excited to see the ongoing development of the Belfast waterfront.

“City Quays 3 is one of the largest strategic investments ever undertaken by Belfast Harbour and we’re delighted to award the contract to a local construction company," Mr O'Neill said.

"In addition to supporting 500 local construction jobs, the office will build upon City Quays success by providing strategic accommodation to meet demand for Grade A, city-centre office space.

“In just five years, City Quays has emerged as an iconic waterfront destination for sectors including legal, media, IT and financial services. Our experience of developing in advance of market demand, and the subsequent success in securing occupiers, has led us to progress City Quays 3. This investment will assist both indigenous and new market entrants and we have already had very positive early discussions with a number of potential occupiers.”

Glenn Gilmore, regional director at Farrans Construction outlined the firm's delight at being awarded the "prestigious" contract.

"The award of this prestigious contract, within the heart of the City Quays waterfront scheme, re-establishes our relationship with Belfast Harbour Commissioners.

"Our team have been heavily involved behind the scenes and this announcement is a testament to the professionalism and expertise of all our team working on the project to date.”

John Armstrong, managing director of the Construction Employers Federation (CEF), believes the project will provide a "significant economic boost"
to the Northern Ireland economy.

“After the recent planning approval for City Quays 3, it is great to see a major local contractor in place so quickly to deliver the project. Farrans, its direct workforce and their supply chain will bring a wealth of experience to the project and, at a time of ongoing political and economic uncertainty, the project’s commencement will come as a significant economic boost locally," he said

“Belfast Harbour is a major client for Northern Ireland’s construction sector and the industry looks forward to working with it as it continues to expand on its economic contribution to Northern Ireland," Mr Armstrong added.

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