Plans for £6m redevelopment of former NI linen mill
Proposals for a new £6m development at the vacant Gilford Mill in Co Armagh could create around 150 new jobs.
Plans for the old mill, which is between Lurgan and Banbridge, include a garden centre, restaurant, apartments and parking.
Co Antrim developer Karl Asset Management is bringing the application to Armagh, Banbridge and Craigavon Council and have set up an online consultation facility for the public.
On a website showcasing the proposals, it states: “The vision of the project is to re-establish Gilford Mill as the focal point of the area through the sensitive redevelopment of the site that stitches the village centre and the outlying residential areas together with the river path utilised as a key connection.
“A masterplan is in the process of being developed that sets out a blueprint for taking forward development on the wider site as a whole.
“The current proposal includes a garden centre at ground floor level with the creation of a covered canopy on the river side of the site.
“An extension is also proposed at ground level to the front of main block.
“Care has been taken to conceal the majority of the structure using the existing site topography and retaining structures.
“The extension incorporates a flat roof design to assist sensitive integration with the principle elevation of the main block.
“A restaurant is proposed at first floor of the main block with outside seating extending out on top of the ground floor extension level.”
It also proposes up to 40 high quality residential apartments on floors two to six.
Car parking is provided to the rear of complex and is largely concealed from view. Important features such as the water turbine and chimney stack remain as part of the proposal.
The firm says the £6m development will lead to between 50-70 full and part-time jobs created. There will also be 80 jobs supported during the construction period.
The website says the plans bring an important listed building back into public use with the regeneration of a vacant site at a prominent location.
The firm says it adds to the retail offer in the area as well as new accommodation with local businesses benefiting from added visitors to the area and new residents. They estimate around and extra £100k in rates income also.
“It will support Gilford to become a thriving village once more,” says the document.
Previously a hub for the linen industry since the late 17th century, it is believed the current buildings all date from the second half of the 19th century.
The Mill closed in 1986 and since then, the buildings have become derelict and changed hands on several occasions. The site was acquired by Karl Asset Management in March 2016 who have surveyed all buildingsand carried out urgent repairs.
For more information on the project, click here-
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