The Belfast Telegraph building has been sold to County Tyrone-based property firm McAleer and Rushe.

The newspaper is leaving the historic building in the heart of Belfast’s city centre, as it is moving its printing operation to Newry in County Down.

Stephen Surphlis, McAleer and Rushe’s property director, said it was “a very exciting acquisition for the company” BBC reports.

He said the firm will begin working up proposals “which will enhance our city”.

When the building was advertised for sale, two potential development options were laid out, both featuring a hotel in the listed part of the complex.

One of the development options also included a 414-bed student housing scheme, while the other had 222,000 sq ft of offices.

The development options are not binding but give an idea of how the site could be used.

McAleer and Rushe is currently the most active major developer in Belfast.

The company is building a new headquarters for Belfast City Council and is demolishing the former Belfast Metropolitan College building on Blackstaff Square ahead of a hotel scheme.

It also has a number of other active planning applications.

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