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O'Hare & McGovern

Grove Health & Wellbeing Centre

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Project Info

  • Project Category:
  • Project Name:
    Grove Health & Wellbeing Centre
  • Client:
    Belfast City Council
  • Location:
    120 York Street, Belfast, BT15 3HB, N.I.
  • Architect:
    Kennedy Fitzgerald & Associates with Avanti Architects

Project Overview

The Grove Health and Wellbeing Centre has transformed one of the most deprived areas of North Belfast. The centre is a flagship development in the regeneration of the York Road/North Queen Street area.

This innovative health and well-being centre provides a leisure centre, a sports hall, library, crèche, café and shared ancillary areas with other facilities including a day centre for the elderly and retail pharmacy. The centre focuses on integrated health, fitness and information in a one-stop environment.

The Grove is a rigorous application of our proven quality control system delivered an extremely high quality building which became a national award winner.

This contract had a traditional procurement route. The modern building is predominantly three storeys with a basement at a total GFA measuring 10,052 m².

The centre is steel framed with curtain walling and cavity block-work external walling. The building was fully finished and fitted out (with the exception of loose furniture and bowling alley equipment) by O’Hare & McGovern including fixture fittings and reception desks. Other works included; extensive car parking and access roads, wide spread hard and soft landscaping.

Central of the health and leisure facilities at The Grove, is the library which spans over the main entrance concourse. The open plan area welcomes the local community to the centre.

The development also contributes to the renewal of the area as an adjacent ‘linear park’ was created in which trees was planted, transforming the arterial route and visually provides a therapeutic environment for those from the Health Care Centre.

Overall, the building is pleasing on the eye as fixed woven steel was used on windows for security, allowing light into the building and provides retaining views of the park however restricts vision into private areas within the centre such as the swimming pool.

To maintain the open park land effect tall unsightly security fencing was avoided, the only form of a boundary indication being a low level fence bordering a foot way which is a continuation of the park land. Illuminated gabion walls were constructed.

Overall the project was delivered on time, within the council’s final budget.

Key Features

  • Prestige Access Award 2008
  • Best Community Care Design Award 2008 - Building Better Health Awards         
  • The William Keown Trust Awards 2009 - Prestigious Access Award in recognition of its accessibility & user friendly environment
  • RIAI Irish Architecture Awards 2009 Exhibition Award - Leisure Category
  • First of its kind in  NI, providing various facilities under one roof
  • Worked in partnership with Belfast City Council, Belfast Health Trust & The Belfast Education & Library Board to deliver one of the largest investments in physical infrastructure to Belfast City
  • 20,000m³ bulk dig - 9m deep excavations
  • Structural steel frame
  • 3281m² standing seam & sedum roof
  • 6500m² ceramic tiling to walls floors 7 swimming pool 


  • This is the first centre of its kind in Northern Ireland offering three different services, health, leisure and libraries under one roof. : Belfast Lord Mayor, Councillor Jim Rodgers
  • As the council representative, I was intimately involved with all issues associated with bringing this project to fruition. Dermot Black, Project Manager, Belfast City Council
  • We are delighted that we will now be providing a range of local health and social care services under one roof, from this modern and convenient location at the heart the lower north Belfast community. Anne Diamond - Belfast Health and Social Care Trust
  • Libraries are ideally placed to promote and support personal and community development and wellbeing and the Grove Centre allows a range of providers to work closely together, under one roof, for everyone’s benefit,” she said. BELB Chief Librarian Katherine McCloskey