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Well, yeah... there's a big hospital alright, although that isn't necessarily a facility for the exclusive use of dundonalders. I was referring to local amenities and facilities more than anything... and yeah, schools are the obvious one, but then you have to think of the pull and strain on infrastructure/amenities generally (like roads, traffics, sewage, broadband provision etc).
You would think all that would be enough to put people off moving there... 😛 that and the traffic bottleneck!!

Usually I would wax lyrical about Comber at this point but we seem to be on the receiving end of a housing expansion too without any suggestion of an increase in local amenity provision so we are likely to be in the same boat. Are houses being built anywhere else across the province or just BT16/BT23? 😩

Planning leaves a lot to be desired. I don't know the ins and outs of planning legislation but it seems to be possible in other parts of the UK to put obligations on developers to provide infrastructure yet that doesn't seem to happen here.
 

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I'm sure it's the same in most suburban/edge of town areas, but the amount of resi being knocked up in dundonald is unreal (without the corresponding infrastructure to support it). Two primary schools, and one GP surgery in the whole of dundonald for example (and has been ever thus when it was a hamlet with an ice rink). No shortages of churches of course.
Not quite to the scale of developments in Dundonald, but the Four Winds is becoming far too built up. All the housing in the red area has been developed since the late 80s, and theres proposals to develop more in the large blue area- i don't know how much of the site it to be developed, but a substantial portion at least. Not a single amenity has been developed to cope with this, bar the extension of the bus service half way along the Ballymaconaghy Road. It's almost more of a case of what has been lost- a golf course, driving range, and dry ski slope have all fallen by the wayside over the last decade or two.

The Ballymaconaghy Road itself is single lane, very twisty, and is full to the brim with cars every morning- the queues at the Four Winds roundabout in all directions on a normal pre covid day are quite something. And of course all the housing developments are ever larger networks of confusing cul-de-sacs, with single entrances onto the busy roads, and absolutely no community at all. The one pub in the area, the Four Winds- is really not busy at all in spite of the huge mass of people living in the area.

With only a couple of bus services to the area, which are generally late at busier times, everyone drives here- drives down to Forestside, drives to the schools, drives to work, even drives to the local Mace. Its not helped by the stupid designs of these developments with their one way in/out systems, meaning a walk which should be a few hundred metres can be anywhere up to 1 km. Development in the blue area will just add more of the same.

FW by hypnotoad24, on Flickr
 

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Grand Opera House progressing well. The previous extension now completely unrecognisable from what used to be there. I had the pleasure of working in this building when the new extension was built and I can certainly say it was unfit for purpose so glad to see it being reworked.

Good to see the old Shakespeare rooms being reinstated to a bar. Looking forward to seeing the inside.

3b93465b-4d42-4a73-859c-a5e35c79b064.JPG
38c503a9-3143-4bbc-a211-4835fe944010.JPG
 

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There are no recycling facilities in Dundonald worth talking about. The Council expects residents to drive 30 minutes to Carryduff. The closest council swimming pool is even further away in Lisburn. I don't have an issue with transport myself although it is beyond capacity. But the council facilities are a disgrace for the number of rate payers in the Dundonald getting little in return for their money. Comber I'm sure will be the same. The thing is people want to live in the subs so there is no point in complaining about it, my issue is the complete lack of amenities and infrastructure to support people living out there.
 

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Not quite to the scale of developments in Dundonald, but the Four Winds is becoming far too built up. All the housing in the red area has been developed since the late 80s, and theres proposals to develop more in the large blue area- i don't know how much of the site it to be developed, but a substantial portion at least. Not a single amenity has been developed to cope with this, bar the extension of the bus service half way along the Ballymaconaghy Road. It's almost more of a case of what has been lost- a golf course, driving range, and dry ski slope have all fallen by the wayside over the last decade or two.

The Ballymaconaghy Road itself is single lane, very twisty, and is full to the brim with cars every morning- the queues at the Four Winds roundabout in all directions on a normal pre covid day are quite something. And of course all the housing developments are ever larger networks of confusing cul-de-sacs, with single entrances onto the busy roads, and absolutely no community at all. The one pub in the area, the Four Winds- is really not busy at all in spite of the huge mass of people living in the area.

With only a couple of bus services to the area, which are generally late at busier times, everyone drives here- drives down to Forestside, drives to the schools, drives to work, even drives to the local Mace. Its not helped by the stupid designs of these developments with their one way in/out systems, meaning a walk which should be a few hundred metres can be anywhere up to 1 km. Development in the blue area will just add more of the same.

FW by hypnotoad24, on Flickr
As far as I understand it, the entire blue area is to be developed, by two different developers (not sure if either have got planning permission yet, but it is currently in process). In addition to that, construction has commenced (site clearance) on another site shown in that image, the indent outside the red block at the bottom - at least this will see a new road being constructed from Ballymaconaghy Road to Saintfield Road, through Primrose Hill/Brooke Hall.
 

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Grand Opera House progressing well. The previous extension now completely unrecognisable from what used to be there. I had the pleasure of working in this building when the new extension was built and I can certainly say it was unfit for purpose so glad to see it being reworked.

Good to see the old Shakespeare rooms being reinstated to a bar. Looking forward to seeing the inside.
It's looking superb, really looking forward to getting back to it. Can't wait to have a good nosy at the re-opening gala.
 

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As far as I understand it, the entire blue area is to be developed, by two different developers (not sure if either have got planning permission yet, but it is currently in process). In addition to that, construction has commenced (site clearance) on another site shown in that image, the indent outside the red block at the bottom - at least this will see a new road being constructed from Ballymaconaghy Road to Saintfield Road, through Primrose Hill/Brooke Hall.
Wasn't aware of that one, but i guess at least there's a bit of joined up development. Must be why they upgraded the junction at Primrose Hill on the Saintfield Road, if a whole pile of additional traffic is to exit there, and a possible bus route.
 

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Yes that whole left hand corner right down to the Saintfield road was zoned for planning over 10 years ago before Fraser sold it all a before the crash. He had a good crystal ball. I didn't realise the area in blue was now zoned as well.
 

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Yes that whole left hand corner right down to the Saintfield road was zoned for planning over 10 years ago before Fraser sold it all a before the crash. He had a good crystal ball. I didn't realise the area in blue was now zoned as well.
I'm not sure what Fraser's involvement is now but it is them who have applied for planning permission on the right hand side of that blue zone and as far as I am aware, they are also the builders for the bit between Laurelgrove and Brooke Hall.
 

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Perhaps I'm slow on the uptake, but it looks like Belfast has been updated again on Google Maps, its got Kings Landing in TQ and everything.

Also missed how many solar panels were on the Odyssey Roof.
 

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Yeah it's good to see the giant creator gone that soon be UU Belfast. Hopefully in 5 years time we will see the North Foreshore tidied up with giants park and movie studios etc and the waterside half developed.
Still a lot of under utilised land in Belfast but hopefully that just means there is plenty of opportunity for continued development.
 

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Maybe it's updated in Maps; on Google Earth it's been like that for a while, the coverage is from May 2019. They have a version from April 2020, but the resolution isn't great. I'm surprised they don't have a better one from last year given how great the weather was in Spring.
 

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I'm sure it's the same in most suburban/edge of town areas, but the amount of resi being knocked up in dundonald is unreal (without the corresponding infrastructure to support it). Two primary schools, and one GP surgery in the whole of dundonald for example (and has been ever thus when it was a hamlet with an ice rink). No shortages of churches of course.
To come back to this sort of... i see there is a planning application in to replace the Elk with a drive through coffee thing. Seems like a bit of a shame, can't be too many pubs in the area.
 

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To come back to this sort of... i see there is a planning application in to replace the Elk with a drive through coffee thing. Seems like a bit of a shame, can't be too many pubs in the area.
Ruby's (f.k.a. the Elk) is last remaining pub in Dundonald, after the demise of the Lewis a couple of year back (not that you would have gone to either as they were utterly grim). That said, there isn't many decent coffee shops or casual restaurants either but will be interesting to see who has put in the application and if the licence will be surrendered. It has potential to be a really decent spot for an independent and so long as it doesn't become a Costa, Starbucks, Tim Hortons etc.

Any more details Toady?
 

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Ruby's (f.k.a. the Elk) is last remaining pub in Dundonald, after the demise of the Lewis a couple of year back (not that you would have gone to either as they were utterly grim). That said, there isn't many decent coffee shops or casual restaurants either but will be interesting to see who has put in the application and if the licence will be surrendered. It has potential to be a really decent spot for an independent and so long as it doesn't become a Costa, Starbucks, Tim Hortons etc.

Any more details Toady?
Not a great deal, application is being pursued by Rubys themselves so they must feel the bar isn't viable long term. The off licence is being retained though!

I attended the pub quiz there every Thursday until covid put a halt to it, certainly the range of beer on offer had declined since Rubys took it over, but the staff were good craic and they had redecorated upstairs and invested in a substantial pizza oven, perhaps covid has changed their plans now.

The plans below- it certainly smacks of big coffee chain rather than independent.

rubys by hypnotoad24, on Flickr
 
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