£2.5 million airport development to create 35 new jobs

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A planning application has been submitted for a £2.5 million forecourt and retail development adjacent to Belfast International Airport.

The new Airport Road facility will create 35 jobs and is scheduled to open in a year’s time.

The project will support up to thirty construction jobs.

The application is by Dunadry-based Moorefield Contracts Ltd which says the much needed development will be a significant addition to the range of facilities available near the airport.

The proposal involves the building of a 10,500 sq ft retail outlet which will encompass a Centra shop, sandwich bar, coffee kiosk, two hot food bars, an extensive food hall, children’s play area and an ATM. Outside, there will be Texaco-operated forecourt with four dual pumps allowing eight cars to refuel at any one time.

Canice Mallaghan, from Moorefield Contracts, says the company is at an advanced stage in negotiations with a number of parties to operate the Coffee Kiosk and Food Bars.

Mr Mallaghan said: “Moorefield Contracts believes this will be a hugely successful development and one that is badly needed in the immediate vicinity of the airport. There is a growing volume of traffic to and from the airport but there’s no facility at hand if you want petrol or diesel, or get something to eat and drink.

“We estimate the cost of the project at £2.5 million and in a very real sense, this is a clear vote of confidence in the airport and South Antrim.

“The 35 permanent jobs will inject more than half a million pounds in wages annually and will be a boost for the local economy.”

Belfast International Airport Managing Director, Graham Keddie, has said the development will transform the Airport Road area and be a welcome addition to the airport which is enjoying considerable passenger growth.

Mr Keddie said: “A development of this quality, backed by private capital, will be a big success. It adds to what is already available and addresses a glaring need in the area. The airport is firmly back in growth mode and we expect that to continue in 2016 as more and more people opt to support their local airport.

“Our success leads to more jobs and increased business opportunities. Moorefield Contracts has recognised that fact, and those behind the project are to be congratulated for their commitment and foresight.”