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Henning Larsen to turn Belfast waterfront into ‘new Copenhagen’

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Scandinavian practice Henning Larsen has unveiled £400 million plans to regenerate Belfast’s former industrial waterfront district

According to the practice, the 6.5ha masterplan for the former Sirocco Engineering Works site was inspired by the ‘successful harbour front developments in Copenhagen’, while its stepped massing is based on the ‘unique terraced stone landscape of the Giant’s Causeway’.

Henning Larsen’s proposals replace previous designs for the riverside plot, then called Sirocco Quays, drawn up by Broadway Malyan last year

Now dubbed Belfast Waterside, the scheme between Bridge End and the Albertbridge Road on the city’s east bank is being hailed as the ’single largest development in Belfast’s recent history’.

It aims to create 750 new homes as well as hotels and office spaces overlooking the River Lagan.

The tallest commercial blocks will be built along the north of the site facing the railway to form a ‘noise-blocking acoustic barrier’ with the smaller buildings facing south to keep the riverfront ‘pedestrian-friendly and human-scaled’. 

Jacob Kurek, partner at Henning Larsen, said: ‘We saw a truly special opportunity in this ambitious project to bring a Nordic understanding of outdoor living to Belfast. From Copenhagen, we know that harbours have an enormous potential to activate public life in a city.

’We are going to create the framework for people to feel part of a shared public life by the River Lagan, making it attractive to stay in the city. River Lagan will no longer create a barrier in Belfast but is going to connect it instead.’

Construction work on the 158,000m² project is expected to start later this year and complete in 2023.   

Project data

Location Belfast East bank, located at Short Strand and next to Bridge End and the River Lagan
Type of project Mixed use
Client Swinford (Sirocco) Limited
Architect Henning Larsen
Landscape architect Henning Larsen
Planning consultant Turley
Structural engineer Aecom
M&E consultant Aecom
Quantity surveyor Aecom
Planning supervisor Aecom
Start on site date Autumn 2018
Completion date Autumn 2023
Gross internal floor area 175,000 m²

Henning larsen sirocco red outline belfast


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