A major Newry city centre housing development at the former site of a nuns’ convent has been approved.
The application by Clonrose Development includes 89 social and affordable dwellings, together with a community hub is expected to generate 120 jobs during construction.
The High Street site was once on the short-list as a potential location for the £60m Newry health hub, but was not selected.
The £12m investment for the former St Clare’s Convent and girls primary school also involves the sympathetic restoration of a B2 listed chapel including with the retention of several mature trees and burial grounds.
Planning committee chairperson, Declan McAteer (SDLP) said: “This a huge development in a historical area of Newry that is now set for a great investment.
“Not only will the people of High Street see a regeneration of the area with the new housing and community hub, but it will also gain a boost with the construction of the new Newry, Mourne and Down District Council civic centre nearby.
“The developers have also taken into consideration the conservation work that will be required when it comes to the chapel and burial grounds associated with the Poor Clare nuns.
“This will be come a very attractive place to live in a part of Newry that has in recent years been under-developed.”
Following the planning approval, the site demolition and “construction will commence immediately” according to the Clonrose website.