Revitalised Cork on show at 'People, Place, Progress' event

Revitalised Cork on show at 'People, Place, Progress' event
Picture: Denis Scannell

A REVITALISED and evolving Cork city was highlighted at a major event last night to showcase the positive changes taking place to the city’s skyline.

During a briefing for business leaders titled ‘People, Place, Progress’ last night, Cork City Council chief executive Ann Doherty unveiled 32 new and upcoming developments, taking place around the city centre. These include hotels, education facilities, transport projects, and retail and office developments.

Navigation Square, just one of the many developments mentioned at last night's 'People, Place, Progress' event.
Navigation Square, just one of the many developments mentioned at last night's 'People, Place, Progress' event.

Work is underway on Navigation Square, which will be capable of hosting 3,000 employees when it is completed, and the green light has been given to a project on Horgan’s Quay which will deliver 237 apartments and space for up to 5,000 employees. Offices are also being developed at 85-86 South Mall and 97 South Mall.

Meanwhile, the old Cork Savings Bank is set to become a new hub for UCC’s business school. The new UCC/CIT School of Architecture is also underway, with 150 staff and 50 students set to move to Douglas Street. Students from the CIT Crawford School of Art and Design have also moved into 46 Grand Parade.

Students will have 1,000 extra bed spaces coming from construction projects that are approved or underway. Projects at the former Crow’s Nest and Square Deal sites got the green light in recent days.

On transport, bus use is up 25% over the last few years and the Bus Éireann city fare was extended to include areas like Ballincollig, Carrigaline, Glanmire, and the airport.

Construction of the Harley Street bridge linking Merchants Quay and Patrick’s Quay begins next month, and work to reorientate Kent Station towards the river is underway.

The City Centre Movement Strategy is also being pushed ahead. The most recent aspect implemented was banning car traffic from Patrick’s Street during certain hours, and attention will now turn to the northern quays and MacCurtain Street, preparing the city for a bus rapid transit system in the coming years.

St. Patrick's Bridge Rehabilitation Project: one of the key projects planned for the city in 2018.
St. Patrick's Bridge Rehabilitation Project: one of the key projects planned for the city in 2018.

Key actions for 2018 include: The completion of the Maldron Hotel on Beasley Street; the extensive refurbishment and restoration of St Patrick’s Bridge; the substantial completion of the first two blocks of Navigation Square; the completion of the new Court Services Building on Anglesea Street; work beginning on the Morrisons Island Public Realm and Flood Relief Scheme; and the enhancement of Bishop Lucey Park.

City officials and Minister Simon Coveney have also promised that events centre plan will be finalised in the near future, but there is no construction date yet in sight.

Cork City Council has also set up a unit to snap up strategic sites in the city centre as part of its regeneration strategy. Work on derelict units is also taking place, with 75 city centre sites earmarked for attention from the council in order to bring them back into use.

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