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Sirocco Works – Carvill Group must work with the local community

28 September, 2007

Speaking ahead of today's launch of the Carvill Groups plans for development of the Sirocco site in Belfast, East Belfast Sinn Féin Representative Niall Ó Donnghaile gave the plan a cautious welcome.

Mr Ó Donnghaile stated:

"After years of this substantial site lying derelict, I welcome the Carvill Groups' plan for development.

"It is indeed a very ambitious plan and if completed it will totally transform the landscape on the east side of the Lagan and bring much needed investment and employment to an area which has experienced much deprivation.

"However, the communities in Inner East Belfast have witnessed plans for this site come and go. The key outstanding issue for them has been the inclusion of a social housing element on this site.

"The Carvill Group have discussed with and invited opinion from representatives of the neighbouring communities including Sinn Féin, St Matthews Housing Association and the Short Strand Partnership however the issue of the scale of any social housing element of their plan has remained unresolved.

"Whilst I welcome today's launch as a step forward and wish the Carvill Group every success in this ambitious plan, I also recognise that the support of the neighbouring communities is crucial to the success of a plan of this scale.

"I urge the Carvill Group to re-engage with the local communities to clarify their position on the issue of social housing." ENDS

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