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Last Updated: Wednesday, 17 October 2007, 12:01 GMT 13:01 UK
Belfast eye to open for Christmas
An artist's impression of how the 'Belfast Eye' will look.

Work has begun on the construction of a "Belfast Eye" in the grounds of the City Hall.

A 60m wheel is scheduled to open on 25 October, giving passengers panoramic views 200ft above the city.

The 365 tonne structure has 42 fully enclosed capsules, each of which can carry six adults and two children for each 15 minute trip.

The council and Department of Social Development said the 3.5m project would be self-financing.

World Tourist Attractions, which will run the attraction, has already built big wheels in Manchester and Seville.

John Lowry, from the company, said it was delighted that the construction of the wheel was finally under way.

"We are due to stay until March, but we would like to stay longer," he told the Belfast Telegraph.

"We've got engineers from Holland and technicians from England putting the wheel together.

"It took a long time, but it is great to finally be over and to bring the wheel to Belfast.

He added: "I understand that there will be an official ceremony held around November 19."

The firm said that it would be operating the attraction in the city centre for the next five months.

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