Tuesday, 30 April 2013

Forum for Alternative Belfast present 'Belfast / a method' at Golden Thread Gallery

Golden Thread Gallery invites you to get a bird’s eye view of the city. Belfast/ a method is an exhibition by The Forum for Alternative Belfast, a community interest company that campaigns for a more connected built environment for the city of Belfast and its people.

FAB's City Model.

Meeting the Challenges of Community Planning in the Age of Austerity | Friday 3 May, 10am - 4pm at UUJ

Students and staff of BSc Hons Community Development are holding a Community Planning Conference at the University of Ulster Jordanstown.

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The keynote speaker, Mae Shaw (University of Edinburgh), will draw on lessons learnt from the Scottish model of community planning to challenge us to reflect on the issues and challenges for the community, voluntary and statutory sector in implementing community planning in Northern Ireland.

The conference will also draw on local case-studies to highlight some of the benefits of adopting a community planning model. Gavan Rafferty (School of the Built Environment, University of Ulster) will talk about local examples of Community Planning in practice.

The Conference will include three themed workshops.

Date: Friday 3 May, 11am - 4pm
Venue: Room 8K14B, Jordanstown Campus, University of Ulster

For further details and to book a place please contact Dr Rosemary Moreland 02890 368333 or email [email protected]

Tuesday, 23 April 2013

The Academy of Urbanism Annual Congress | The Producer City - an urbanism for the 21st century? | 15 - 17 May 2013

Taking the theme The Producer City, delegates from a wide variety of disciplines and locations will assemble to explore how post-industrial towns and cities can forge new roles for themselves. Studying one of the UK’s leading examples, we will learn how Bradford has re-discovered its productive edge by combining creative processes with technology, placemaking and international marketing.

The Congress will draw inspiration from a range of UK and European speakers addressing the challenges of the 21st century productive city, focusing on creative analysis and practice around the economics of place, the culture of place, the shape of place, and the competitiveness of place. We will consider the role of heritage in guided tours of the city centre and Saltaire village, as well as the impact of digital urbanism in this, the world’s first UNESCO City of Film.
In a participatory learning exchange over the three days, Academicians will contribute their expertise to Bradford’s emergent City Plan thinking and policy formulation, adding value to our host city, in exchange for transferable ideas to apply elsewhere. 


The Academy of Urbanism Annual Congress
The Producer City - an urbanism for the 21st century?

15-17 May 2013

For more information and to book your tickets, visit

Monday, 22 April 2013

DSD suspend Phase 2 and refocus on Phase 3 of Belfast Streets Ahead

The second phase of the Belfast Streets Ahead programme (North, East and West of Belfast City Hall) has been suspended by DSD Minister McCausland as work refocuses on the third phase of the Belfast Streets Ahead programme (Royal Avenue, York Street (to its junction with Frederick Street), Frederick Street, Upper North Street, North Queen Street (part), the environs around St Anne’s Cathedral, Cathedral Gardens (aka Buoys Park) and Library Square (Union Street, Little Donegall Street and Library Street)).

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Phase three is intended to complement the works completed during the Belfast Streets Ahead Phase One project and will link to the University of Ulster’s plans for their campus at York Street.

The public realm enhancements to be taken forward within phase three will "deliver high quality streetscapes and open space, and will include improvements to surfacing, lighting, landscaping, street furniture and public artwork".

Work is currently under way to appoint a design team to take forward the development of design proposals for the scheme. It is anticipated that the team will be in place towards the end of 2013.

For more information on Belfast Streets Ahead visit:

Thursday, 18 April 2013

Belfast / a method | 2 May - 8 June 2013, Golden Thread Gallery, Belfast

The Forum for Alternative Belfast presents ‘Belfast - a method’ in the main gallery at Golden Thread Belfast as part of the Cathedral Quarter Arts Festival 2013. The exhibition launches Thursday 2 May, 6 - 9pm. For more information click here.

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Attwood gives green light to Peace Building and Conflict Resolution Centre at the Maze

Environment Minister Alex Attwood today granted planning permission for a Peace Building and Conflict Resolution Centre at the Maze. The decision of the Maze / Long Kesh redevelopment follows the recent approval for the relocation of the Balmoral show to the site. The building is designed by Daniel Libeskind along with McAdam Design.

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A further application for minor works to the listed and retained buildings on the Maze site has also been granted planning permission today.

Commenting on his decision, Minister Attwood said: “I have today granted permission for the proposed centre. There is learning to be taken from the conflict here. The centre can contribute to sharing this learning and perhaps to help inform the resolution of conflict in other places."

“I believe that good planning needs good design. That is certainly the case in the design of the Centre created by Daniel Libeskind, a world leader in architecture and a friend of Northern Ireland.”

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Commenting on the speed of the planning decision Alex Attwood said: "I was able to grant planning permission for such a major scheme like this in less than six months. This is another example of the benefit of pro-active pre-application discussion and community consultation in dealing with major planning applications of regional significance, such as this. This will play a significant part in meeting a target of the EU funding programme and I am determined to continue making major planning decisions speedily and accurately and making a planning system more fit to achieve its purpose.”

To view the planning application files online click here.

Wednesday, 17 April 2013

Creating a Sustainable Built Environment through Education and Collaboration | Wed 8 May, Conor Lecture Theatre, UU York Street, Belfast

The Faculty of Art, Design and Built Environment has organised a half day seminar entitled “Creating a Sustainable Built Environment through Education and Collaboration” which will take place on Wednesday 8th May, in the Conor Lecture Theatre, Belfast Campus. The event will explore some of the innovative work of the School of the Built Environment in terms of business-led research and innovation; graduate employability skills and meeting the needs of businesses; and the benefits of a strong University role in the development of the local economy.

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This is part of the University of Ulster’s three-day showcase event - the Ulster Business Festival - across all four campuses in May. From 8th - 10th May discussions, lectures and seminars will demonstrate its engagement with the business community in its widest sense, highlighting its collaborative approach to engaging with industry at present - and exploring how these links can be further developed and enhanced.


Register: Email Peter Shanks at [email protected]

Monday, 15 April 2013

John Tuomey at the Lyric Theatre | Sunday 21 April, 3.30pm

The architect responsible for the award winning Lyric Theatre at Ridgeway Street, Belfast will talk about his role in developing the Stirling Prize nominated design.  John Tuomey established O’Donnell + Tuomey in 1988 and the practice went on to win more than 80 national and international awards for their architecture.

Image via

Sunday 21 April, 3.30pm, Lyric Theatre, Ridgeway Street, Belfast.

Tickets £7.50 / £5.00 concession from the Lyric Box Office. Contact (028) 9038 1081 or book online at

Friday, 12 April 2013

Wednesday's soundwalk now online

Above: Screenshot of Wednesday's soundwalk on

On Wednesday, we hosted a soundwalk with the team from - they led a group of architects, photographers and other curious souls around the city centre.

The results range from binaural recordings to descriptions using text and images. The soundwalk itself - through pedestrian streets, shopping arcades, busy roads and the river - is a great demonstration of just how much our ears tell us about our environment.

Thanks to Pedro Rebelo, Matilde Meireles, Rui Chaves and Aonghus McEvoy for leading the workshop, and thanks to Deirdre Greaney, Barry Cullen, Nicholas Stewart and David Bunting for taking part and listening to Belfast with open ears.

The Belfast Sound Map is an open resource that aims at engaging local communities in capturing everyday sound and hence characterise the soundscape of the city. We encourage not only the submission of sound recordings, but also other forms of experiencing and registering sound, such as text or image. The overall design of this platform facilitates this multiplicity of approaches, while also allowing participants to create their own projects. These are presented as separate, individual layers of recordings within the map. Visit for more info.

My Belfast 400 | Andrew Molloy, PhD Architecture student

Andrew Molloy, PLACE Volunteer and PhD Architecture student.

April 27th 2013 marked four hundred years since Sir Arthur Chichester read out Belfast’s Royal Charter received from King James I and granting Belfast’s town status, a moment immortalised by John Luke’s fantastically vibrant mural under the dome of City Hall. Belfast City Council took the opportunity of this date lying so near the long Easter weekend to throw open the doors of the City Hall and host an array of events celebrating this anniversary, all absolutely free to anyone who wanted to come along. For a self-confessed ‘Belfast geek’ (or should that be ‘enthusiast?’) such as myself this was an opportunity too good to miss. 

Photo by Andrew Molloy.

Thursday, 11 April 2013

RIAI Research Award Open for Submissions

A new Research Award has launched as part of the 2013 Irish Architecture Awards. The award will recognise the important contribution made by Irish architects to research relating to the built environment. 

To enter, practices should submit one A1 Board describing their research project including a 200-word abstract, with images, graphics and other appropriate illustrations. Research Projects must be not older than three years from commencement of research and must demonstrate an innovative response to current issues of the built environment. The research methodology must be explained and research sponsors should be identified. Applicants need to be RIAI Members.

More information available at:

Deadline for Submissions: Friday 19 April 2013, 12 noon.

[Retro]Fit for the Future? | Thurs 18th April, 6pm, PLACE

PLACE present an evening of discussion exploring lessons learnt from the recent retrofit of McMaster Street and the benefits of architectural restoration.

Contributing to the discussion will be Siobhan Brown, Assistant Director, Hearth, Declan Allison, Campaigner, Friends of the Earth, and Michael Briggs, Director, East Belfast Community Development Agency.

This event follows the recent launch of the UAHS and Hearth project 'Quality Streets' - a short animation demonstrating the retrofit of traditional terraced houses.

Date: Thursday 18th April

Time: 6pm

Venue: PLACE, 40 Fountain Street, Belfast, BT1 5EE

Cost: Voluntary donation

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Wednesday, 10 April 2013

Harnessing Creativity - Call for Creative Practitioners

Call for creative professionals

Creative Labs are groups of creative people, businesses or practitioners working together to develop inspiring new concepts through open- mindedness, experimentation and collaboration. They will enable practitioners from the creative sector to work with each other, or with individuals from other businesses, on collaborative concepts.

The Labs will be facilitated by mentors able to challenge, guide, inspire and advance discussions from idea generation to models for new products, practices or services. Each Lab session will help participants strengthen skills and knowledge, drawing in new ways on personal creativity, collaborating with others, discussing and connecting with emerging market trends, presenting work to potential investors in a compelling way, and finding new applications for their skills and experiences.

Clancy Moore Architects: Building Practice | Tues 16 April, 6pm at 15 Chlorine Gardens

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Swift breakfast, Wednesday 15 May 2013, 8.00am to 9.15am, Antrim Library

The Swift Breakfast on Wednesday 15 May will highlight good building practice to help in Swift conservation. You will hear about good practice measures that can contribute to CEEQUAL and BREEAM accreditation for biodiversity conservation and enhancement. The event can contribute to CPD self-assessment.

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Call for Residency: RECYCLAB Eco-Design & Eco-Architecture 2013

R-­‐Urban is a strategy of urban ecology initiated by AAA in Colombes in partnership with the City of Colombes, Ile de France Region, The Department 92, the Life+ programme of CE and other local, national and international partners, including Public Works in London. R-­‐URBAN tries to improve the capacity of urban resilience of a suburban town by reinforcing local economy, setting up urban agriculture and reuse & recycling hubs, encouraging cooperative housing projects, increasing biodiversity, reducing and recycling waste and engaging citizen in the ecological management of their neighbourhood. R-­‐URBAN started with a network of civically run facilities in Colombes, which includes amongst other a hub for eco-­‐design and eco-­‐construction: RECYCLAB (http://r-­‐ This hub will function as a social enterprise and will produce assemblages for eco-­‐construction and urban agriculture from reused and recycled materials collected locally.

Monday, 8 April 2013

Forum for Alternative Belfast seek Volunteers for Model IBBelfast

Forum for Alternative Belfast are seeking people who would like to get involved in the creation of Forum for Alternative Belfast's model of Belfast. In the run up to the Golden Thread exhibition on 2nd May - Belfast/a method - FAB are opening their doors throughout April for you to help with the completion of the model.

For more information on Model IBBelfast and to volunteer visit the facebook page at this link.

Model IBBelfast. Credit: Forum for Alternative Belfast.

'Quality Streets' Launch | Templemore Baths, 12th April, 12pm

The Ulster Architectural Heritage Society launch 'Quality Streets' on Friday 12th April at 12pm. The short animation, produced in partnership with Hearth Housing Association, demonstrates how traditional terraced housing can be retro-fitted using energy efficient measures, looking at McMaster Street in East Belfast as an example.

McMaster Street, Belfast. Photo by Gary Potter.

Date: 12th April 2013
Time: 12.00pm
Venue: Templemore Baths, Templemore Avenue, Belfast BT5 4FW
Tea and coffee provided.

Soundmapping workshop | Wed 10 April | 14:00 at PLACE

To attend:
email [email protected] /
phone 02890232524

Thursday, 4 April 2013

Walls 400! History Conference | Sat 6 & Sun 7 April, Derry~Londonderry

Walls 400! is a programme of activities to mark the quatercentenary of the City Walls during 2013. 

The objective of Walls 400! is to fully explore the contested history that the City Walls represent and to celebrate Derry’s Walls as a present-day, national heritage asset, with the potential to unite rather than separate people. 

The Walls 400! History Conference is dedicated to unpacking the history of Derry~Londonderry's Walls. Exploring myths, tackling hard history and providing evidence-based facts. Over two days delegates will get the opportunity to quiz archaeologists and historians and to take part in practical workshops examining the fabric and use of Derry's Walls.

Full details are available in this brochure.

Tuesday, 2 April 2013

Exhibition Launch: 'Competitions in Architecture' | Thurs 4 April, 6pm at PLACE

This Thursday 4th April at 6pm PLACE will launch the 'Competitions in Architecture' exhibition. Exploring the theme of architectural competitions and their contribution to quality in architecture, this exhibition highlights a selection of winning entries from the 11th session of Europan, and built works resulting from past sessions of the competition. Europan is a biennial architecture and urbanism competition for architects under 40 held in over 17 countries in Europe. This exhibition coincides with the launch of Europan 12. See for details.

Curated by Jane Larmour and Patrick Wheeler with PLACE, and the kind co-operation of Europan Europe.

Competitions in Architecture | Thurs 4 April - Sat 27 April

Exhibition Launch Event
Thursday 4th April, 6pm at PLACE, 40 Fountain Street, Belfast. Join Jane Larmour and Patrick Wheeler as they introduce the exhibition and Europan 12.

Panel Discussion
A panel discussion will be held during the exhibition run to explore the value of the architectural competition in contemporary practice. Could the built environment in Ireland be improved by awarding more public work through competition?

Panel and date to be confirmed. If you are interested in attending this event please contact [email protected]

Retrofitting - Realising the Advantages | Tues 2 May, 9.30 - 4pm

On Tuesday 2nd May, 9.30 - 4pm the Chartered Institute of Housing and CITB-ConstructionSkills NI, in partnership with PLACE, present a day event focussed on retrofitting.

The need to improve the energy performance of existing houses and buildings is generally recognised by industry and the general public and it is further driven by various Government targets. However how to retrofit effectively is less well understood. This seminar will give attendees an opportunity to examine why retrofitting is important, what regulations are in place and what are the advantages of retrofitting our housing stock.

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Speakers include Tom Wooley (Rachael Bevan Architects), Roger Hunt (Journalist), Joseph Birt (Building Control), Peter Keig (Eco-Energy (NI) Ltd), Noel Rice (NIHE). For a full agenda for the day visit

Date: Thursday 2nd May 2013, 9.30am - 4pm

Venue: CITB-ConstructionSkills NI, Nutts Corner Training Centre, 17 Dundrod Road, Crumlin, BT29 4SR

Cost: £85 plus VAT (£75 for CIH members)

Book Online: CLICK HERE

More Information: Contact Catriona Holmes at CIH on 028 9077 8222 or email [email protected]

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