Translink welcomes South Korean City Mayoral delegation to visit the new Weavers Cross Development

Translink have hosted a visit from the mayoral delegation from the South Korean city of Sejong as part of the Connected Places Catapult UK-Republic of Korea Innovation Twins Programme.

This unique opportunity was part of a wider programme to explore Belfast and Sejong’s innovation ecosystems with a focus on collaboration around transportation technology and creation of a smart city district around the transformative Weavers Cross development.

The innovative twinning programme supports the development of meaningful, city to city relationships with a view to establishing mutually beneficial practical partnerships between Belfast and Sejong. It aims to help to unlock international market opportunities, offers the opportunity to share research initiatives and aims to create positive policy changes to deliver sustainable growth and carbon neutral cities.

The initiative is delivered by Connected Places Catapult on behalf of the Department for Science, Innovation and Technology (DSIT) through the International Science Partnerships Innovation Fund.

Speaking at the visit, Duncan McAllister, Head of Belfast Grand Central Station and Weavers Cross Programmes, Translink said,

“It was a privilege to welcome the Vice Mayor for Economic Affairs, Seung Won Lee, and his colleagues today.   This valuable partnership places innovation at the heart of green economic growth and prosperity. We welcomed the opportunity to learn from Sejong guests while sharing our ambitious strategies for Translink’s business operations and our plans for regeneration at Weavers Cross.

“Translink is leading innovation and change programmes to decarbonise public transport and enhance service delivery in fleet, engineering, property, regeneration and infrastructure right across the business.

“Weavers Cross is the most significant transport led regeneration project in Northern Ireland, it is supported by all elements of our business innovation programmes on one site.

“With the new, state of the art Belfast Grand Central Station at its heart, it creates a dynamic new city neighbourhood offering the right environment to support collaborative innovation within the Belfast Smart District.  This is complimented by the innovations in fleet and engineering, infrastructure investment and digitalisation to the communication, control, ticketing, signalling and telecoms for our bus and rail networks.

“We also highlighted our plans to decarbonise public transport with advances already being made to introduce both hydrogen and electric buses into passenger service with long term plans to expand the use of this technology across the bus and train fleet in future years.

“By exchanging experiences in best practice this excellent programme offers real potential for international collaboration to drive positive change.  We look forward to building on this visit and this partnership with a view to inspire and encourage more people to modal shift to smarter, sustainable public transport options which will be vital in helping to achieve the carbon reduction targets set out in the NI Climate Change Act”. He concluded.

Connected Places Catapult’s Chief Executive, Nicola Yates OBE said,

“Connected Places Catapult is pleased to have facilitated the forging of this relationship between Translink and Sejong City in the Republic of Korea as part of our Innovation Twins programme designed to support the development of meaningful, long-term relationships. Such visits foster enduring connections that deliver tangible outcomes, creating jobs and growth in both regions.”