Limelight Belfast's new live venue in the Cathedral Quarter set for approval

The Arnott's warehouse on Dunbar Street, Belfast. (Image: Google)
Ryan McAleer

THE company behind one of Belfast's best known live music venues looks set to get the official go-ahead for a new entertainment venture in the Cathedral Quarter.

Limelight Belfast Ltd is planning to turn the former Arnott's fruit warehouse on Dunbar Street into a 1,600 capacity events space.

The proposal, which includes permission to open an access path from the busy Hill Street thoroughfare, has been recommended for approval by planning officials in Belfast City Council.

However the recommendation is for limited period of two years, after which the council will be able to revisit the development.

If green-lit, it's likely that Limelight Belfast will relocate its popular late night events in the former Belfast Telegraph building, to the former warehouse next to St Anne's Square.

The ex-newspaper hub has been earmarked for £75 million redevelopment in a joint venture by Belfast City Council and McAleer and Rushe.

Limelight Belfast's portfolio includes its two live venues on Ormeau Avenue, Katy's Bar and The Rock Garden, a rooftop terrace on Ormeau Avenue.

The new Limelight venue is well positioned to tap into the thousands of students set to move into a series of major new accommodation developments surrounding the Ulster University campus on York Street.

A report produced ahead of Tuesday's meeting of the city council's planning committee, indicates that Limelight Belfast Ltd intend using the new venue for live music concerts; live comedy; live podcast recordings and TV/film recordings, with a maximum of two events per week.

It will also feature a bar. The existing warehouse is not listed, with planners stating it “is of no particular architectural merit”.

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