Over the past 25 years Matthew Lloyd Architects has worked on community regeneration projects mostly in East London. Much of this has been centred on new-build housing and mixed-use provision, where their work has helped to transform run-down localities.
Matthew Lloyd on Mackies: "Mackies is a wonderful site characterised by an outstanding and unusual urban topography. We agree that it is an ideal location for a major piece of city regeneration and renewal that could have a huge impact on the city of Belfast for the very long term."
For ten years Take Back the City activists have been photo-mapping available land in Belfast which could be used to tackle the housing crisis. Since 2020 we have hosted seminars that brought together international experts and homeless people with the goal of finding solutions. Surveys and workshops involving local people, housing associations and council duty-bearers have explored the potential of the Mackie's site. In 2022, we launched our international design competition and the shortlisted entries drew thousands of visits, comments, votes and downloads of the plans. In 2023 NI Opera produced the acclaimed opera, Nobody/Somebody, about our Mackie's campaign, attracting enthusiastic audiences and packing out the theatre.