Work is starting on the new £15 million Brook Leisure Centre – part of a £40 million investment by Belfast City Council in west Belfast.
Councillor Matt Garrett, Chair of the council’s Strategic Policy and Resources Committee cut the first sod for Brook, one of seven new leisure centres the council is building as part of its £105 million Leisure Transformation Programme.
He was joined at the sod cutting by Gareth Kirk, Regional Director for social enterprise leisure provider, GLL and Kevin Sage, Contracts Manager at Heron Bros, which is the main contractor delivering the build.
The emphasis at Brook is on outdoor leisure provision but the existing 3G pitch will continue to operate as work begins to create:
- A second 3G pitch for Gaelic and soccer
- Three covered and three uncovered 3G five-a-side pitches
- A hurling wall
Other facilities will include:
- A 25 metre, four lane pool – bringing swimming provision to the Colin area for the first time
- A sports hall
- A 60 station fitness suite
- An exercise studio
- A spin studio
- A playground and outdoor gym
Councillor Garrett said:
“When completed Brook will complement Andersonstown in providing the latest high quality fitness facilities in the west of the city.
In addition, the social clauses inserted into the contract means Heron Bros will try to maximise social economic and environmental benefits for Belfast through providing training and employment opportunities and, where practical, using local suppliers for goods and services.
Leisure Transformation is a fantastic opportunity for all of us as we work across the city ensuring our new leisure centres each have their own unique selling point, minimising duplication and ensuring balanced, value-for-money investment.”
Damian Heron, Group Managing Director at Heron Bros, said:
“Heron Bros is delighted to begin work on Brook Leisure Centre. We will be simultaneously delivering three Belfast Leisure projects; Andersonstown, Brook and Robinson Centres which are due to be completed in late 2019. These projects will enable us to expand on our impressive portfolio of leisure facilities whilst providing significant community benefits to the wider Belfast area.
“Working in partnership with Belfast City Council Heron Bros is also pleased to be making a difference to people’s lives in Belfast not only by providing the latest high quality facilities but positively contributing to the community through sub-contracting and employment opportunities, including apprenticeships and placements,”
Gareth Kirk, Regional Director for GLL said:
“We are extremely proud of our ongoing commitment to delivering new and innovative facilities to communities in Belfast. We look forward to helping Belfast City Council achieve its goal by seeing more people participating in an active lifestyle by providing first class leisure services like these.”