A six-storey building designed by Smith & Cowser for the Belfast Bank. The building comprised a ground floor bank branch and offices at upper floors. The Northern Bank relocated its ground floor branch and the building was placed on the market in 2008 inviting offers over £7.75m. The building was not sold and in 2013 Danske Bank (previously Northern Bank) refurbished the office entrance lobby and upper floors. Also in 2013, Visit Belfast (tourist information centre) relocated to the ground floor unit (more information below).
Osborne King, acting on behalf of Danske Bank, placed the building on the market in August 2015 inviting offers in the region of £5.75m. The building is expected to sell for £5.95m during early 2016 to an as yet undisclosed buyer.
Belfast City Council appointed Transport Consult and Allan Balnaves to assess the rationale for relocating the Belfast Welcome Centre (now Visit Belfast) from first floor premises at 47 Donegall Place (opened April 2001). The 2010 report considered three options: (1) relocating to the ground floor at 8-10 Donegall Square North; (2) relocating to Belfast Central Library; (3) remaining at 47 Donegall Place.
An economic appraisal undertaken by Belfast City Council’s Development Department recommended that the “most advantageous option” would be for the Belfast Welcome Centre to relocate to ground floor premises at 8-10 Donegall Square North.
Belfast City Council submitted a planning application for the new tourist information centre (Visit Belfast) in March 2013 (Z/2013/0268/F). The Council entered into a 15 year lease agreement for the basement (1,994 ft2), ground (5,114 ft2) and mezzanine (3,116 ft2) floor of the building in July 2013. Work commenced in July on the £1.82m fit-out of the new Visit Belfast unit (funding comprised £747,000 from ERDF via NITB and £1,053,000 from BCC). The project was designed by URS and work was undertaken by H & J Martin. The new Visit Belfast centre opened on 12 December 2013.