Danske Bank The Gallery

Danske Bank Supports New Apartment Complex ‘The Gallery’

Andrew Kelly Corporate

An exciting new multi-million pound development consisting of almost 60 luxurious apartments has officially opened on Belfast’s Dublin Road.

The Gallery, which has been developed by Richland Group, has a capital value of over £8m and was completed with support from Danske Bank.

The scheme comprises 58 one and two bedroom contemporary apartments designed for city living in the heart of Belfast, as well as a ground flood café/bar. The apartments are now available for purchase and the café/bar will open in April 2017. Agents for the scheme are Simon Brien Residential and Templeton Robinson.

The Gallery is so named because it is located at the midpoint of the Belfast art scene, halfway between the Cathedral Quarter and the Ulster Museum, and because many world-renowned artists and famous poets have lived and worked in the area in the past – such as William Conor, Paul Henry, Richard Rowley and Gerard Dillon.

It offers nine floors of modern living space inspired by similar apartment complexes in New York and Tokyo, with entry level apartments starting at £115,000. The public and common spaces will showcase original art from the new wave of talent coming through Ulster University’s Art School, creating a permanent exhibition.

Gary McCausland, Chief Executive of the Richland Group, said: “The scheme is targeted at investors looking for good rental returns, first-time buyers, young professionals and possibly students or their parents interested in making a wise investment.

“There have been no new apartments built in Belfast in nearly a decade and we believe the time in the cycle is right, confidence is returning and people have the appetite for new, high quality homes. There are very few significant residential projects in the pipeline at the moment and we have identified a gap in the market for this type of high quality product.”

The 4,000 square foot ground floor space of The Gallery building will be occupied by a café-bar with 6 metre high floor to ceiling windows and an outdoor seating area.

“The café bar is based on several I have visited in the Meatpacking District in New York. We are taking the industrial chic theme that Belfast has seen before to the next level and introducing some grandiose features. We will also display amazing work from local artists including Colin Davidson, Neil Shawcross and Brian Ballard,” said Mr McCausland.

He added: “The whole scheme is a vote of confidence in Belfast and the potential of the city. I was born here and I believe that Belfast is a city on its way up. Danske Bank has been very supportive of our vision since coming in as senior funding partner. They have been business friendly in their approach and the relationship has helped us successfully deliver the project.”

Danske Bank provided £3.5m of support for the project. Brian Shane, Corporate Banking Manager at Danske Bank, said Richland’s experience in the sector had been a key factor.

“The team at Danske Bank was happy to provide funding to Gary and the Richland Group for this exciting new apartment development. Richland has a strong and proven track record in the development of high spec apartments in cities across the UK and Europe and we believe The Gallery on the Dublin Road will help attract more people to live in the city centre.

He added: “While providing a new type of cosmopolitan accommodation in Belfast, The Gallery has also provided a boost to the economy, with all the builders and tradesmen who worked on the scheme coming from local companies.”

Geoff Sharpe, Senior Manager in Danske’s Corporate Banking team added: “It is great to see new investment in schemes like The Gallery, which will be essential if we want to see Belfast continue to evolve and to attract more people to live and work in a vibrant city centre.

“Belfast has a young talented workforce, low unemployment, high levels of foreign direct investment and a growing tourism industry, so it is clear that the city offers attractive fundamentals for investors in both the commercial and residential real estate sectors.”

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