Eden Project Foyle is a new riverside cultural and environmental tourist attraction in Derry/Londonderry. It was officially launched today (Tuesday 11 February) with the release of new artist’s impressions of the project.
The project is developed by the Foyle River Gardens charity. It is an ambitious plan to transform the banks of the River Foyle, linking the Boom Hall and Brook Hall estates and giving public access to previously inaccessible land.
Inside the building would be a performance area and play spaces. Visitors would be able to walk on the roof and take zipwires down to the walkways. The structure would be nestled within the trees and inspired by the forest, with a timber and thatch construction which is light, efficient and low-carbon.
The development intends to rejuvenate the site extending from the Foyle Bridge towards Culmore Point and plans for it include walled gardens, tree-top and floating walkways, a water activity centre and play areas. The 100-hectare (250-acre) site includes 2.5 kilometres (1.5 miles) of the River Foyle’s bank.
Eden Project International and Foyle River Gardens estimate that the project will cost £67m and will open in summer 2023, with construction beginning in the next 18 months.
A charitable trust, the Foyle River Gardens, will own the project which will be operated in partnership with the Eden Project.
Eamonn Deane, Chair of the Foyle River Gardens charity, says: “Eden Project Foyle brings together a network of local partners and supporters from universities, businesses, statutory and social organisations to address issues which affect each of us. The relationship with the Eden Project has been built up over the last three years and we are delighted to be able to move this project forward together.”
Sir Tim Smit, Co-founder of the Eden Project, says:
“We are hugely excited to be working with the Foyle River Gardens in the creation of Eden Project Foyle and believe completely in its transformative capacity to draw visitors to the North West and become a global must-see destination.
“Having our project named by the Irish and UK Governments in their New Decade, New Approach document is a huge vote of confidence for the team and we are looking forward to working with our partners in Derry and Donegal to bring this project forward.”