Nature Based Solutions - Implementation Models Database

Ecological restoration, Re-profiling river banks, Parks and Gardens

Connswater Community Greenway

A short description of the NSB

The Connswater Community Greenway (CCG) has created a 9km linear park through east Belfast, following the course of the Connswater, Knock and Loop Rivers, connecting the open and green spaces. The Greenway has created vibrant, attractive, safe and accessible parkland for leisure, recreation, community events and activities. The project improves the quality of life for the people of east Belfast. These include the 40.000 residents, pupils and students attending the 23 schools and colleges, visitors and tourists to east Belfast and those who chose to work and invest in east Belfast. A whole new greener environment has emerged to link local residents to parks, leisure facilities, businesses, shopping centre, schools and colleges. In particular, project main key facts are: • 9km linear park for walking and cycling; • 16km of foot and cycle paths; • 26 new or improved bridges and crossings; • Serve 23 schools and colleges; • Up to 5 km of rivers cleaned; • Hubs for education, interpretation points and tourism and heritage trails; • Wildlife corridor from Belfast Lough to the Castlereagh Hills. The CCG aims to encourage healthier and more active people, engaging with community members and community groups in specific activities, with schools and colleges in specific activities and with key stakeholder groups. Furthermore, the Connswater Community Greenway aims to contribute to the economic regeneration of east Belfast through investment, employment and tourism, encouraging ownership through volunteer activities, promoting the Greenway in the media, developing tourism and heritage trails and Protecting properties from flooding.

NBS Implementation context
Location Belfast (United Kingdom)
Status (from - to) Project delivered (2012-2017)
NBS Scale City
NBS Impacts scale City
Urban density/ Soil consumption Medium Low (suburb at the limit with rural areas, etc.)
NBS Typology

NBS Uban Challenges
Climate Issues Climate mitigation
Climate adaptation
Other 0
Urban water management and quality Urban water management and quality
Flood management
Other 0
Air Quality Air quality at district/city scale
Air quality locally
Other 0
Urban Space and Biodiversity Biodiversity
Urban space design
Urban space management
Other 0
Urban Regeneration and Soil Air quality at district/city scale
Other 0
Resource efficiency Food, energy and water
Raw materials
Other 0
Public health and well-being Acustic
Quality of life
Other 0
Environmental justice and social cohesion Environmental Justice: Recognition
Environmental Justice: Procedural Justice
Environmental Justice: Distributional Justice
Environmental Justice: Capabilities
Environmental Justice: Responsibility
Social Cohesion
Other 0
Urban planning and governance Urban planning and form
Governance in planning
Other 0
People Security Control of crimes
Control of extraordinary events
Other 0
Green economy Circular economy
Bioeconomy activities
Direct economic value of NBS
Other 0
NBS Stakeholders & Governance

The project has been developed by the EastSide Partnership and is being delivered by Belfast City Council. EastSide Partnership is a broad based social partnership with community, statutory, political and business members who are dedicated to the regeneration of East Belfast. Formed in June 1995 and founded in July 1996 with the responsibility to get stakeholder organisations to work together to develop and implement plans for the social, economic, environmental and cultural regeneration of East Belfast, its board membership includes local council, statutory sector agencies, community sector organisations, independents.

Initial actors (Leaders) Governments Local government/municipality (Belfast City Council)
Involved actors Governments Local government/municipality (Belfast City Council),Community NGOÍs / CSOÍs / interest groups CBOÍs / neighborhood communities Citizens
Ecological scale City scale green networks
Governance model CLUSTER 5: Network Governance Adaptive co-management
NBS Financial aspects

The Connswater Community Greenway is a £40 million investment in East Belfast. It is funded by the Big Lottery Fund, Belfast City Council, the Department for Communities and Department for Infrastructure. An £11 million flood alleviation scheme incorporated into the project has helped to reduce flooding to 1700 properties.

Global (estimated) cost of the project more than 5M€ (£40 million)
Financing mechanism CLUSTER 1: Public financing,CLUSTER 2: Financial institutions Municipal Green Bonds,CLUSTER 4: PUBLIC-PRIVATE
NBS Business Models Archetype
Technological Non applicable
Social Adopt a stewardship role
Organisational Re-purpose the business for society/environment
NBS Success and limiting factors
Process enablers
Knowledge Collaboration Co-creation
Governance Co-creation and participation Involvement of urban government
Economy Government support Public-private partnerships
Process inibitors
Knowledge -
Governance Disconnection between short-term actions and long term goals, Complexity of governance structure Role ambiguity
Economy -
IM Keywords
  • Adaptive co-management

  • City scale green networks

  • Public financing

  • Municipal Green Bonds

  • Public-Private financing

  • Adopt a stewardship role

  • Re-purpose the business for society/environment