Ministers visit Northern Ireland’s first Shared Futures Housing Development
Apex was delighted to welcome Junior Ministers Emma Pengelly and Jennifer McCann to officially open the first shared neighbourhood at its Ballynafoy Close on the Ravenhill Road, Belfast.
‘Together: Building a United Community
The housing scheme is the first of ten shared neighbourhood to be created under the Northern Ireland Executive’s ‘Together: Building a United Community’ strategy.
Ballynafoy, a former brownfield site, was developed by Apex at a cost of £10m and provides 67 properties with a mix of 59 houses and 8 apartments. Four of the dwellings are designed for those with disabilities.
Speaking at the launch Junior Minister Emma Pengelly said:
“This important official opening today reinforces the commitment of the Northern Ireland Executive to implement and deliver on its good relations strategy. It is a key milestone in our vision of a united community, where everyone can live, work and socialise together. We have come a long way in recent years but we still have much to do to ensure that everyone in Northern Ireland enjoys the shared and united community we all strive for. We see here in bricks and mortar what can be achieved.”
Junior Minister Jennifer McCann said:
“This first of ten shared neighbourhoods is a clear statement not only of our commitment but our conviction to improve community relations and build a truly united and shared society. People here have welcomed the choice to live together and this shared neighbourhood shows how our society is transforming and being enriched. It is evidence that people want to work together positively and constructively and live together in harmony. The Ballynafoy Close shared neighbourhood is a positive example and template to build on to shape the kind of society we can all embrace.”
Apex Chairman, Martin Doherty commented:
“Apex is delighted to have completed the first shared new build development at Ballynafoy Close. We are indebted to our residents and the wider community for supporting this initiative and for their commitment to the principles of Shared Futures. Today Apex’s Good Relations Plan has also been launched and we look forward to the opportunity to work with all stakeholders and residents to make Ballynafoy a successful working example for others to follow.”
Local resident Deborah Morgan lives in one of the two bedroom homes in Ballynafoy Close along with her son Odhran. Ms Morgan said:
“I really love everything about my new house; it is very energy efficient and is within walking distance to my work and Odhran’s school. It really feels like home to Odhran and me.”