Northern Ireland news

Cordon around Primark scaled back further

Hoarding around the Tesco and Primark store has been scaled back. Picture by Mal McCann

THE cordon around Primark has been scaled back even more with hopes high that a more substantial part of the Belfast city centre will be opened soon.

The Tesco store, located beside Primark, is now completely visible to passers-by and falls outside the cordon for the first time since the blaze destroyed the iconic store last August.

An exclusion zone was immediately put in place following the massive blaze at Bank Buildings, extending along part of Royal Avenue and Castle Street, which initially left 14 businesses unable to trade.

Many shops and restaurants within the cordon remained closed for extended periods., but it has been gradually been scaled back and a walkway for pedestrians allowed many traders to re-open.

One of the most recent changes saw a section of the cordon removed in March to allow Zara to open its doors for the first time and in February, a walkway linking Fountain Street to Castle Street was opened, providing a boost for retailers in the area.

In recent days, much of the cordon close to the Tesco store, which is one of the last businesses to remain shut, has been scaled back.

The store is now completely visible with hopes high that it will re-open in the coming months.

It is also expected that Castle Junction will open soon to traffic and pedestrians being able to move through the city centre more freely.

Belfast City Council today said a pop up park at Castle Junction, which it had erected during the ongoing work, would soon be reduced.

It was established to help increase footfall in the city.

But the council said on Twitter: "Castle Place park has been a hit but it’s time to say bye as work starts to reduce the cordon and reopen Castle Junction to pedestrians/traffic".

 

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