Translink and Belfast City Council have announced an official partnership to deliver the ‘Buy Social’ clauses during the construction and engineering phase of the new station and associated infrastructure at Weavers Cross, maximising social and economic benefits for communities across the city.
The partnership will see the creation of a Construction Employment Academy (CEA) which will host and deliver local interventions to promote these opportunities to local people. The CEA will provide information, training and on-going support to potential new entrants to ensure readiness in nearby communities for these construction jobs.
Through ‘Targeted Recruitment and Training clauses’, the Weavers Cross project could see up to 100 ‘Buy Social’ opportunities generated within the local construction sector through the build and engineering of the new station and associated engineering contracts.
Chris Conway, Translink Group CEO, said: “Translink is delighted to have agreed this important and innovative partnership with the Belfast City Council. As a key flagship project for the NI Executive, Weavers Cross is an ambitious and exciting scheme with potential to provide many years of employment and training opportunities for local people.
“The formation of a bespoke Construction Employment Academy will ensure we can support potential new entrants into the many opportunities around skills, training, work placement and apprenticeships – its aim is to simply provide real training for real construction jobs in Belfast.
“We have had much engagement with the surrounding communities in relation to the Buy Social scheme and feedback has been very positive. We are looking forward to building on this as we progress this important project for Belfast and Northern Ireland”.
Belfast Lord Mayor, Councillor Nuala McAllister said: “Weavers Cross is a key economic asset which will make a significant contribution to our city’s revitalisation and along with our partner, Translink, we want to make sure that everyone in Belfast has fair access to the resulting job opportunities and that investors have direct access to the skills base available here.
“We made a commitment in The Belfast Agenda to making this a city where everyone benefits from a thriving and prosperous economy, and where everyone fulfils their potential. Our new Construction Employment Academy will be instrumental in helping us to achieve those ambitions for Belfast.”