The regeneration of one of Dublin’s neighbourhoods proved successful because it placed the needs of the community at its core, a Stormont minister claimed today.
Northern Ireland’s Social Development Minister Margaret Ritchie joined the Republic’s junior Housing Minister Batt O’Keefe for a tour of Ballymun to learn from its multi-billion euro makeover.
The north Dublin suburb – formally a byword for bad planning and social deprivation – is undergoing an ambitious transformation with the development of new housing and other amenities.
Ms Ritchie said she is hoping to apply the same lessons to areas in Belfast such as the Lower Falls, Lower Shankill and Crumlin Road, and other parts of the North.
“Central to our regeneration in the North is about putting communities at the heart of regeneration and I want to learn from experiences gained here today to put that back and invest those sort of experiences back in the North,” she said.
“I think through new forms of neighbourhood renewal, new forms of regeneration and where the community has a particular buy-in where they identify what their needs are, they then make a contribution to regeneration similar to what has happened here.”