Waterfront Hall, Belfast

Chris Millar

London, United Kingdom

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The Waterfront Hall is a multi-purpose facility, in Belfast, Northern Ireland, designed by local architects’ firm Robinson McIlwaine. Practice partner Peter McGukin was the project architect.

The hall is located in Lanyon Place, the flagship development of the Laganside Corporation. The development is named after the architect Charles Lanyon. Planning for the building began 1989, with the hall being completed in 1997 for the sum of £32 million. The main circular Auditorium seats 2,241 and is based on the Berlin Philharmonic Hall designed by Hans Scharoun. However the flexible design of the Auditorium allows the stalls seating to be moved to create a larger arena. The smaller adjoining Studio seats 380. The dome of the building is coated in copper. This is so the exterior will eventually turn green and reflect the dome of Belfast City Hall and other Victorian buildings in the city centre. The building also contains bars and a restaurant.

In 2002, the hall was voted the second best conference centre in the world in the Apex Awards.[citation needed] A 2006 socio-economic impact study commissioned by Belfast City Council found that the hall had generated £10 for the city for every £1 spent on operational costs.

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