Northern Ireland

Future of Newry's Albert Basin closer to being decided

Newry and Mourne District Council is moving closer to making a decision on the future of the city's Albert Basin site.

The council said in a statement on Monday that a number of bids had been submitted in July.

It is now known that two of those bids have been shortlisted.

The council has agreed to arrange a meeting with one bidder to clarify details of the proposal. The meeting is expected to take place in September.

'Great opportunity'

The Albert Basin site is situated between the Clanrye River and Newry Canal and has become significant because of its strategic location directly opposite the multi-million pound Quays Shopping Centre development.

The council-owned land was advertised for sale at the beginning of March this year.

Parker Green International, Newry-born tycoon Dr Gerard O'Hare's property development and investment firm, owns the Quays and has offered £10m for the Albert Basin site on an earn-out basis over ten years.

The firm also offered to assist Newry and Mourne council to develop the Meadow leisure complex.

Speaking to the Newry Democrat last week, Dr O'Hare said: "I would be surprised if there would be as high a bid from any other party. This is a great opportunity to get this important site going at last and to start to build our city."

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