Ballycastle Marina Building Reaches Completion

28 November 2011

The new Ballycastle Marina Building was officially handed over to Moyle District Council on 20th October 2011 as part of the Sail West Initiative. The £600,000 building will provide onshore toilet, shower and refreshment facilities for boat owners berthed at the Marina.

GEDA Construction were the main contractors and McKenna Design Architects the architects for the building, which is currently undergoing furnishing.

The Blue Flag award-winning Ballycastle Marina is situated on the spectacular North Antrim Coast, offering excellent scope for marine travel around Ireland and to Scotland. In the 1400s, the harbour was known as Port Brittas and later became the main port for coal boats when coal was mined at Fairhead. In recent years, the harbour has become very popular with fishermen and deep sea divers. Each of the 74 berths have fresh running water and an electrical supply within close proximity, along with ample lighting and a keypad access point to ensure visitors’ privacy and security.

Moyle District Council secured €697,975 of grant aid for the project from the European Union’s European Regional Development Fund through the INTERREG IVA Cross-border Programme managed by the Special EU Programmes Body. This funding is part of the Sail West initiative which consists of over 20 partners from around the coast from Donegal to Carrickfergus and along the west coast of Scotland who are all developing marine related tourism infrastructure. The aim of the initiative is to increase visitor numbers long the Northern Ireland, Republic of Ireland and Western Scottish coastlines.

The Ballycastle Marina Building Project included the demolition of the existing bungalow at the harbour, which has served as the Marina building since the Marina opened in 1990. In its place, a new purpose built facility will be constructed which will provide visitors with the modern, state-of-the-art facilities that visitors now come to expect when visiting Marinas. The new building will provide adequate toilet, shower, kitchen and laundry facilities for the marina visitors, along with internet access. The Harbourmaster’s office and meeting facilities will also be accommodated within the new building.

The two-storey standard structure building stands at around 300m². The building has standing seam bespoke wavelike roof detail and a balcony to allow for better visibility for the Harbourmaster. The exterior finish of the building is wet dash render with a white painted finish, and the building houses several sustainable features such as solar panels and a small wind turbine.

The ground floor contains male and female toilets and showers, along with kitchen and washroom facilities for all the marina users, who will have 24hr access. In addition, there is also reception and office space. The first floor holds a multi-purpose space which will be used for meetings and functions, plus toilet, kitchen and meeting room facilities and additional office space for the Harbourmaster.

Works included the demolition of existing building and various structures, rock removal to the rear of the site, reduced ground level excavation (including rock removal) and the construction of a perimeter retaining wall to the boundaries on three sides. External site works have comprised access steps and a path at the rear of the building.

Aidan McPeake, Client Technical Advisor for the project, said: “The project ran quite smoothly, considering the restrictive site and rather extensive rock removal. Moyle District Council is extremely pleased with the finished building. We now have a superb facility to cater for the needs of our visiting boats. It will also allow us to better promote boating, angling and marine tourism initiatives throughout Western Scotland, Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland which was the main aim of the Sail West Project. We would like to thank our funders who without their contribution this project would not have come to fruition. Our thanks also go to main Contractor GEDA Construction, MDA Architects and Lehding Services Design for all their efforts prior and during construction.”