Former BHS store development plans revealed

Northern Ireland’s Alterity Investments has revealed its redevelopment plans for one of most significant retail locations in Belfast.

Wednesday, 14th July 2021, 1:00 pm
Updated Wednesday, 14th July 2021, 4:48 pm

Following the submission of the proposal of application notice to Belfast City Council, Alterity Investments has unveiled its plans to reinvigorate the former BHS store on Castle Lane as a new retail and leisure destination.

Belfast-based Like Architects who have over 30 years’ experience in retail, leisure, commercial, conservation and residential design have designed the plans proposed to Belfast City Council.

The company has exciting plans to refurbish and reconfigure the 70,000 sq ft site, with potential to subdivide the ground floor at Castle Lane into a number of retail units and for the upper floors to be used for a variety of purposes including a potential rooftop area for food and drink.

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Redevelopment plans at former BHS store
Redevelopment plans at former BHS store

Subject to planning, it also hopes to visually improve the Castle Arcade area to make it more attractive by recladding the exterior of the building and constructing a new oversail section. The new façade has taken inspiration from the building’s past as the Gaumont Theatre.

Richard Faloon, Commercial Director of Alterity Investments, said: “We are delighted to reveal plans to help strengthen Belfast City centre’s offering with the redevelopment of the BHS site. We believe the site has the potential to regenerate the commercial and retail vibrancy of this critical section of the city. We hope to maintain and strengthen the distinctive position of Belfast city centre to enable it to perform its role as the primary shopping centre of the region to promote a sustainable, vital and vibrant city centre.”

The site has been vacant since August 2016 when retailer British Home Stores went into administration. Frazer Kidd has been retained as commercial agent for the property, which comprises three upper floors and a ground floor that opens onto Castle Lane, Castle Arcade and Cornmarket.

Alterity Investments was formed in 1975 and is a family-owned property and investment company. Operating throughout the UK, it has assets in excess of £100m spread across various sectors and owns several other buildings in central Belfast, including other retail sites on Castle Lane. Its properties are situated in prime UK locations, with its client portfolio including firms like Joules, Waterstones, Lloyds Bank, Starbucks, Costa, Greggs and Cotswold.

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