During 2012 representatives from community organisations in the Inner North Belfast area have held a series of discussions to develop an engagement process in relation to the new University of Ulster development.
As a result of these discussions they have agreed a short charter that they believe will maximise benefits for the community and for the University.
The Campus Development Group (CDG) will be formally launched at Clifton House, Belfast on Friday 18th January at 9am. Forum for Alternative Belfast and Community Places will provide technical advice and support.
The following is the charter developed by the Campus Development Group...
Inner North Belfast Campus Development Group
The purpose is to create and maximise tangible and measurable benefits for the community and for the University of Ulster. This will be done by maintaining and developing a permanent, collaborative structure between the Campus Development Group and the University of Ulster to ensure effective community participation at all stages. The emphasis of this collaboration will be on genuine partnership with a solution based focus. This is seen as key preparation to forthcoming changes in public administration involving community and spatial planning.
- Inspire confidence and create positive outcomes for all stakeholders.
- CDG will work with UU to expedite and promote decisions and ensure prompt resolutions to issues.
- Ensure open, accountable and structured community inclusion, participation and representation from an early stage and on a continuous basis in the overall development of the Campus.
- Ensure clarity and honesty for the communities of Inner North Belfast in all deliberations relevant to the campus and its development.
- Communicate and connect all decisions and designs in the area in order to ensure coherence, best practice and best use of money.
- Agree and create measurable targets and outcomes for the short, medium and long term.
- Create significant, measurable opportunities for poverty eradication and for the promotion of sustainable development.
Principles / Practices
- Community participation and consent in all urban regeneration processes is fundamental to the success of the campus development.
- All urban regeneration processes including the New UU Campus must directly involve the community at all stages and must directly address community needs including issues of poverty, deprivation, health, housing, education, environment, accessibility, safety, cohesion and other identified deficits.
- The development of the new campus must be linked with other development plans and strategies for Inner North Belfast and the city as a whole.
- Both parties will abide by the principles of the Concordat agreed between the Government and the Community and Voluntary Sector.
Key Issues & Areas of Work
- Conduct Social and Economic Needs Study
- The study to comprise; A social/economic profile of the population in the area including exploration of issues and potential impacts around all relevant subjects.
- Develop an implementation plan that would include working groups for the specific areas listed below. Such groups may be cross cutting or specifically tailored.
- Create a positive urban design to permit accessibility and ease of movement.
- Identify new and protect existing social and mixed tenure housing sites that make population congestion and associated impacts less likely.
- Explore issues relating to travel, such as Walking, Parking, Rail, Bus, Taxi, Bike, Congestion, etc.
- Provide a significant range of supports and initiatives to the schools and community groups.
- Develop a brokerage process between University and Community to identify needs.
- Have a significant impact on employment in the area
- Explore the possibility of sports/leisure facilities
- Provide affordable childcare for people who wish to return to education and training
- Provide opportunities for small to medium enterprises or social enterprises. For example childcare, retail, catering, leisure, entertainment, etc