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  • Writer's pictureLove Ballymena

Minister Hargey officially launches £29m shared housing scheme in Ballymena

Communities Minister Deirdre Hargey is pictured with Martin Pitt, Chair of Radius Housing.

Communities Minister Deirdre Hargey has visited Ballymena to mark the launch of a new housing scheme that will provide 135 homes in a shared housing development.

The housing scheme, funded by the Department for Communities and Radius Housing, is part of a major regeneration project on what was the site of the former St Patrick’s Barracks.

Minister Hargey said:

“Access to a safe and secure home is a basic human right.  I am committed to delivering more homes for those who need them.

"I am determined that everyone has access to a good quality, affordable and sustainable home that is appropriate for their needs. This scheme, which has received over £15.5m from my Department, will deliver 125 social and 10 affordable homes for the community."

The housing scheme is being delivered by Radius Housing with their lead contractor MJ McBride.  Construction of the new homes began in August and when completed will consist of 32 apartments, including a number which are wheelchair accessible, and 113 houses, ten of which will be for private rent/sale as private homes. 

The project will also see the creation of a new children’s play park.

Speaking at the site, Martin Pitt, Chair of Radius Housing, said:

“This is an exciting project and we are delighted that work is now underway. High quality housing is central to all aspects of wellbeing and we are delighted that it sits at the centre of this major regeneration project.  When completed this will be a community of modern homes with great social infrastructure and a great place to live.

“At Radius we pride ourselves on developing new homes to the highest standard, with a focus on sustainability. These new homes will have the best standards of energy efficiency, which will keep tenants bills down. We look forward to seeing these homes progress, and we will be working with the local community through this stage and beyond, to ensure that it delivers a positive outcome.”

The regeneration of the St Patrick’s site is being led by the Department for Communities who have also funded a £6m spine road which is key to unlocking its wider regeneration potential which includes the residential homes, a new civic space, a leisure and wellbeing centre, an Integrated Industrial Inspiration and Innovation Campus and a new PSNI building.

Minister Hargey added:

“The regeneration of St Patrick’s is now gathering pace with the housing and the main access road underway.  This is an exciting project for Ballymena which will provide a range of social and economic benefits for the community as well as better connectivity between this major site and the town centre.”

The lead contractor on the project is MJ McBride. The project is expected to be completed by mid 2025, and the contract includes a range of Buy-Social requirements, including targets for apprentices on site, meet the buyer events and community sponsorship.

A shared housing scheme is part of the overall Shared Housing Programme (Housing for All) and aims to attract residents from different backgrounds and identities.

The programme is a key component of the Executive’s commitment of building a shared society and is crucial to addressing segregation in single identity districts. Such schemes are supported through Good Relations Support funding, to develop and deliver a five-year Good Relations Plan.


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