Digital technology company Kainos is set to temporarily lease its Bankmore Square site to a social enterprise that has today submitted plans for a pop-up street food and independent retail market to open later this year.
Subject to planning approval, ‘Box Office’ – named as an ode to Dublin Road’s cinema history – will host the best of local food and independent retail vendors in shipping containers, giving start-up vendors an opportunity in an otherwise prohibitive market.
With an emphasis on sustainability, supporting small businesses and a commitment to ensuring a fair living wage is paid to all staff, the project aims to offer a place for the community to come together, promoting strong environmental and social unity messages.
The rent Kainos receives from the enterprise will be donated to a local charity supporting those in food poverty.
Kainos remains committed to developing its new headquarters at Bankmore Square and is using this time to engage with its people and customers to develop a clearer understanding of its future office needs. In the interim, the company has refurbished its existing Upper Crescent office to provide a collaborative working space for those people who wish to work in an office environment.
Commenting on the plans, Brendan Mooney, Kainos CEO, said:
“It is important to us that while we are planning for our future, the site at Bankmore Square is temporarily utilised in a positive way, so we are delighted to support Will Neill’s initiative. This support reflects our broader commitment to sustainability, ensuring that we have a positive impact on the environment, society and in our local communities.”
Will Neill, founder of the social enterprise that will run the site, added:
“I’m delighted that Kainos has agreed to lease the site at Bankmore Square to host our ethical pop-up street food market. Belfast is such an exciting, up-and-coming city and having a space like this to showcase the very best of our start-up food and retail vendors will be fantastic for tourism and the local community.”