Skip to main content
Close Menu Open Menu

RTPI Northern Ireland Best Projects 2024

Excellence in Planning for Heritage and Culture

Queens University Belfast (QUB) Business School & Student Hub

Submitted by Gravis Planning

The new QUB Business School is a state-of-the-art academic centre that respects its setting within a Historic Parkland that is a comfortable neighbour to listed buildings and a wider Conservation Area. The inclusion of features such as geothermal sourced heating and solar panels, alongside biodiversity gain measures such as sedum and wild-flower roofs, means that the centre also promotes a sustainable and environmentally friendly destination for students and staff.

Judges‘ comment: “This development is a great example of working in partnership with many key stakeholders including community involvement to achieve an extremely high quality design, which significantly contributes environmentally and sustainably. The use of energy efficient renewable solutions (including geothermal energy) is exciting and innovative. The scheme also evidences the importance of community involvement in all aspects of the design process, as well as demonstrating how planning professionals are central in the development process to ensure a sustainable outcome"

Commended: Murphy's on Main Street, Ederney Community Hub received a commendation in this category

Excellence in Planning for Communities (small schemes under 50 homes)

Moylinney Court

Submitted by Radius Housing Association

This HAPPI (Housing our Ageing Population Panel for Innovation) pilot project was completed in partnership with NIHE and DFC to ensure older people have homes that are welcoming and where they can age with dignity and safety in their own homes. The HAPPI design principles are: Space and flexibility, Daylight in the home and in shared spaces, Balconies and outdoor space, Adaptability and 'care ready' design, Positive use of circulation space, Shared facilities and 'hubs', Plants, trees, and the natural environment, Energy efficiency and sustainable design, Storage for belongings and bicycles, External shared surfaces and 'home zones'

Judges‘ comment: This well designed project is the first HAPPI scheme in Northern Ireland, completed in partnership with NIE and DfC as an exemplar pilot scheme from a design and funding perspective. The apartments are designed to be an attractive alternative to the family home, suitable for adaptation to meet the changing needs of tenants.  The experiences of the tenants indicate that a community has been created which is peaceful and safe and has had a positive impact on residents’ health and well-being


Excellence in Planning for Health and Wellbeing

Murphy's on Main Street Ederney Community Hub

Submitted by Keys and Monaghan Architects

Murphy's on Main Street Ederney Community Hub opened its doors in September 2022 to address rural isolation, social deprivation and economic difficulties, as well as connecting the area to wider society . The project involving the sensitive restoration of Murphy's Tearooms, comprises café, wellness studios, creative spaces and co-working offices serving the health wellbeing needs of local people and attracting visitors to the area. This reimagined village gathering place has been a resounding success transforming not just the buildings but also people's lives in rural north Fermanagh.

Judges‘ comment: This is evidently an extremely high quality scheme designed to re-use a locally and historically important building, utilising models of reuse and recycle and encouraging/promoting clean energy use and working towards the UN Sustainable Goals. It is clear that the project is vital to the needs of the local community and it is comforting to see the ECDT continually reviewing and evaluating the use of the site and adjoining land to ensure the development not only works to the needs of those presently but also into the future