A number of international investors have listed details of plans for a new entertainment and casino complex in Belfast. The plans are contained a in a motion that is to be debated tonight by the Belfast City Council.
Investors are considering the development which would cost £150 million and would create more than 900 jobs. Despite the fact that a casino would only account for around 5% of the complex, Councillor Jim McVeigh referred to it as “a game-changer” as the modernisation of licensing laws in Northern Island would be critical for securing an investment of this type and continuing growth of the economy.
“The council agrees to carry out a public consultation, including with our tourism and hospitality sector, to ascertain whether the citizen of Belfast wish to see the modernisation of our licensing laws and opening hours and the development of an Entertainment and Casino Complex within Belfast,” said Councillor McVeigh.
Explaining the plans, McVeigh said to Belfast Live: “There have been a number of organisations that have looked at investing in the city. There’s a bit of competition between some of the groups to develop this, we are talking £150 million investment.”
“They are talking an entertainment complex, not just a casino, something like in other big European cities and we are talking about it creating 900 jobs through the whole process.”
As part of his motion, Councillor McVeigh is looking to entrust councils with licensing decisions. In addition, he said that Sunday trading hours would need to be considered in order to allow for the growing number of visitors to the city.
“We really need to open the city up if we want to attract more people,” he said.