Waterside Shared Village is a project supported by the European Union’s PEACE IV Programme, managed by the Special EU Programmes Body (SEUPB). Derry City & Strabane District Council (Lead Partner), Irish Street Youth & Community Association and Hillcrest Community Trust have been awarded €8,057,292.72 to develop the Waterside Shared Village. This Project will result in the transformation of an official interface area into a vibrant council owned community hub within the Waterside area of Derry City; in which the neighbouring Irish Street and Top of the Hill communities jointly programme and deliver shared education; sport; health and well-being; cultural and primary/secondary after school provision on a sustained basis.

The Waterside Shared Village (WSV) will create an iconic ‘transformative shared space’ in the Derry~Londonderry interface area between Irish Street and Top of the Hill.
The Waterside Shared Village project will include a state of the art hub building and outdoor sports complex and aims to build trust and reconciliation between the two communities by creating a safe place for residents to engage in activities together.

The community hub will include a hall that can be transformed into four meeting or training rooms; a community kitchen; office space and a suite of sports changing rooms.
The area around the hub will comprise of a multi-sport grass pitch for rugby, gaelic and soccer; a floodlit artificial 3G soccer pitch; a floodlit artificial cricket training area; and 4 floodlit tennis courts.

Welcoming the development, Derry City & Strabane District Council,  Director of Development Karen McFarland, explained that the project would deliver a wide range of programmes aimed at building a closer relationship between two interface communities. She said: “The Waterside Shared Village project will showcase how sport can bring people from different back grounds together and encouraging engagement and inclusivity. “She also praised the continued good work by the community representatives from both Irish Street Youth & Community Association and Hillcrest Trust saying how she is looking forward to working with them as project partners to transform this former school site, in an area that was once seen as an interface area, into an iconic shared space for all”.

Community Workers, Niree McMorris, Irish Street Community & Youth Association and Geraldine Doherty, Hillcrest Trust said they are delighted that the Waterside Shared Village will be the culmination of many years work between their two distinct areas within the Waterside and will not only change the physical landscape of the area but will improve the life chances of the residents. They said: “The project will help build reconciliation by bringing people from all backgrounds together and allowing them to engage and interact with each other in a shared space. It will also people to build new relationships and renew old friendships through joint educational, sport and recreational programmes as well as being a visible manifestation of the shared future which the EU Peace IV Programme aims to support.”

Construction work is planned to commence by November 2020. The works are expected to be completed by Summer 2022.

For further information on the project or concerns please contact the Project Officer, Leanne Thompson on Leanne.thompson@derrystrabane.com or by telephone  on 02871253253.

For further information on the PEACE IV Programme please visit www.seupb.eu

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