About Titanic Belfast

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Birth of Titanic Belfast

“We live in a new Northern Ireland...”

- Ian Pearson MP, Minister with responsibility for Enterprise, Trade and Investment, 2004

Over one hundred years after the birth of the world’s most famous ship, Titanic Belfast® has become a major new tourist attraction for Northern Ireland.

A Titanic / Maritime Belfast Signature Project

A Titanic /  Maritime Belfast Signature Project now known as Titanic Belfast®, was identified in Northern Ireland Tourism Board’s Strategic Framework for Action 2004-2007 as one of the five key tourism signature projects to enhance Northern Ireland's tourism offering. 

The overall concept was translated into detailed plans and implemented by Harcourt Developments, who enlisted the help of CHL Consulting, a specialist tourism destination development and research consultancy, and Event Communications, Europe's leading exhibition design group. The architecture of the attraction was designed by CivicArts with Todd Architects as the lead consultant / architect.

Constructed by Harcourt Developments, who broke ground in May 2009, the architecturally unique building opened to critical acclaim on 31 March 2012 in time for the centenary.

About TB Launch Day

The Iconic Design

The iconic design comprises many maritime metaphors including water crystals, ships bows & the White Star logo.

While the massive 14,000 sq.m.(150,700 sq.ft.) structure accommodates nine galleries of interactive exhibition space, including a dark ride, underwater exploration theatre, recreations of the ship’s cabins and a luxurious conference & banqueting suites with capacity for up to 1000 guests. 

 

Watch the video below to see Texan architect Eric Kuhne explain Titanic Belfast's design!

Eric Kuhne

A Lasting Legacy

A lasting legacy Titanic Belfast® is owned by Maritime Belfast Trust (#XT13119), a charity committed to preserving the authenticity of Belfast’s maritime and industrial heritage.

The project was co-financed via a public / private partnership between the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Investment via the Northern Ireland Tourist Board, Belfast City Council, Belfast Harbour Commissioners & Titanic Quarter Limited. 

The building is operated by Titanic Belfast Ltd, a privately owned company.

Titanic Belfast is now the cultural nucleus to Titanic Quarter - one of the world's largest urban waterfront regeneration projects, master-planned over 185 acres on the heritage site where RMS Titanic was designed and built.

Titanic Quarter has become a thriving district of entertainment and creative industries, leisure and residential, financial & commercial services, research, learning and technology facilities; perfectly positioned next to Belfast city centre & the airport. 

Titanic Quarter & Maritime Mile
TQ Image

Titanic Belfast Facts and Figures

The main exhibition measures 11,000 sq.m (118,403 sq.ft). With the underground car park of 520 spaces, the entire building is 14,000 sq.m (150,700 sq.ft).
The façade is clad in three thousand different shaped silver anodized aluminium sheets folded into complicated asymmetrical geometries, creating an awe-inspiring visual appearance, enhanced by reflective pools of water surrounding the base. The facades lean out at angles of up to 72 degrees.
Of the three thousand panels, two thousand are completely unique, while none of the ‘typical’ panels repeat more than twenty times – creating a startlingly random effect, always managing to catch the light, a bit like a cut diamond.
From the central atrium, a series of glass escalators, each in excess of 20 metres long, stretch up through a jagged central void. At first floor height, a timber decked bridge provides access to the start of the Titanic story.
The proximity of the historic Titanic & Olympic Slipways, the Harland & Wolff Drawing Offices, and Hamilton Graving Dock, where the SS Nomadic is now berthed, were central considerations during the design, planning and construction of the project. These heritage elements are more than just Scheduled Historical Monuments and Listed Buildings – they represent a cornerstone of Belfast's collective memory and cultural identity.
The total cost of the project was in excess of £100m, a figure comprising the main building contract of £77m, an underground car park, the land value, upgrade of the surrounding public realm - slipways, plaza, roads, services, and 5 years of pre-construction professional fees. It is the most expensive tourism project ever completed in Northern Ireland and was supported by a £60m contribution from the public purse.
In December 2009, Titanic Belfast saw the largest ever concrete pour on the island to form its foundations – 4,200 cubic metres, circa 700 concrete lorry deliveries, one every two minutes for almost 24-hours.
The entire external façade is clad in 3,000 individual silver anodized aluminium shards enhanced by reflective pools of water surrounding the structure.
Titanic Belfast® has the longest freespan escalator on the island. At over 25 metres (82ft) long, it has 124 steps and provides access to the top floor Titanic Suites.
The entrance level ground floor is 1,796 sq.m (19,332 sq.ft) which includes a 60ft high wall covered in sheet metal panels similar in size to those used on Titanic’s hull.
The ticketing desks are designed to duplicate wooden keel blocks akin to those which Titanic’s massive 46,328 tonnes rested upon in the Titanic Dock.
Titanic Belfast® is twice the size of Belfast City Hall covering 14,000 sq.m. (150,700 sq.ft.)
Highest point of the building is 38.5 metres (126 feet) from the plaza level.
External façade replicates four 27m (90ft) high hulls.
Titanic Belfast® is located 100 metres in front of where Titanic's hull was constructed and launched; to its right is the drawing office where she was designed and to the left is the Victoria Channel from where she first set sail.
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