Social Development Minister Margaret Ritchie today officially opened Glenone Park business centre in Clady near Portglenone.
Minister Ritchie was joined by Anne Henderson, Board Member of the International Fund for Ireland, who together with the Department for Social Development provided funding of £364,000 each for the project.
The completed mixed use business centre comprises 9 commercial and light industrial units and office space. It is projected that up to 25 new jobs could be created when all the units are fully let.
Minister Ritchie said: "I hope that Glenone Park continues to prosper, making a positive contribution to the Clady area by offering employment and entrepreneurship opportunities for years to come.
"This project is an excellent example of what can be achieved through partnership. In delivering CRISP schemes like this, my Department, IFI and local councils have together been able to provide support for communities across Northern Ireland to stimulate economic activity in their own areas, encourage local partnerships and lever in private investment. I want to commend all those involved in bringing this project to fruition for their hard work and dedication."
Ms Anne Henderson of the International Fund for Ireland said: "I am delighted to be here today on behalf of the International Fund for Ireland to mark the completion of Glenone Park. The brand new business park has already had a positive impact on the local economy, through the creation of 10 new jobs."
"I am also delighted that five of the nine units are already occupied, which illustrates the demand for these tremendous, high-quality facilities in the local area. Projects like this play a vital role in stimulating economic development and also help to strengthen and sustain local community life."
Funding for the project was also provided by Magherafelt District Council, Ballymena Borough Council and local community group, Riverside Community Enterprises.
Cllr Sean McPeake, chairman of Magherafelt District Council said: "On behalf of Magherafelt District Council, I would like to offer our best wishes to Riverside Community Enterprises on the development of the new workspace facility in the Clady area. We congratulate the local community on the tremendous work they have done over so many years to arrive at this point and the Council was delighted to be able to contribute £60,000 to the building of this excellent facility. The Council is confident that the new centre will become the focal point for economic development and create much needed employment for local people"
Mayor of Ballymena, Councillor James Currie said: "I would like to express my congratulations to Riverside Community Enterprises on the development of new workspace provision within the Clady, Portglenone area.
I welcome the provision of increased employment opportunities for the local community, and much needed workspace accommodation for new micro businesses and developing small and medium enterprises whose growth, development, competitiveness and entrepreneurial skills will continue to strengthen the economic infrastructure of both the Ballymena and Magherafelt Council areas."
PJ McLoughlin, Chairman of Riverside Community Enterprises Ltd said: "I am delighted that the project is now completed with more than half of the units already let. This magnificent facility offers the opportunity for new business ventures especially in these difficult economic times.
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