Plans have been unveiled for the proposed new £20 million Department of Agriculture and Rural Development headquarters at Ballykelly, Co Londondonderry.
The plans have been submitted for approval to Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council and building work could begin in 2016.
Agriculture Minister Michelle O’Neill said the artist’s impression shows the contemporary building is designed to complement the architecture of the surrounding area while providing a modern working environment for DARD staff.
She added: “Today is a key milestone in realising the £20million vision we see for DARD and the potential positive impact this move will have for the north west.
“I am very keen that the new headquarters is viewed as part of village life and I have ensured that the building and its facilities have the potential to be used for other purposes that will benefit the local community and surrounding area.
“I am sure the 21st century design will mean it integrates well with the landscape and has a positive impact on those living and working there.”
“Today is a key milestone in realising the £20 million vision we see for DARD and the potential positive impact this move will have for the north west.”Michelle O’Neill
Once approved building work is expected to begin in 2016 with staff arriving at their new offices by the end of 2017.
Ms O’Neill added: “As well as working with the statutory bodies, we have continued to discuss our plans with members of the local community group and they are keen for work to begin and jobs to move to the area so that they can start to benefit from this significant economic injection.
“My department has identified more than 1,500 civil servants who would want to move to Ballykelly and work will soon begin on staff relocation plans. The level of interest in this location shows the Executive has got it right when it comes to decentralising jobs.”