The European Investment Bank has agreed to provide €100mn for the University of Limerick’s Capital Development Plan 2014 – 2018 which will see the creation of 1,000 new jobs on the campus, 290 full-time positions and 710 construction positions over the period of the plan.
The European Investment Bank loan was formally agreed by Professor Don Barry, president of the University of Limerick (UL) and Jonathan Taylor, European Investment Bank vice president responsible for Ireland, and witnessed by Michael Noonan TD, Minister for Finance and Governor of the European Investment Bank.
The university’s ambitious €224mn Capital Development Plan consists of 12 infrastructural developments on the university’s north and south campus, construction of a new Clinical Education Research building on the site of the University Hospital Limerick, and development of a city centre campus including student residences and an academic building in Limerick city centre.
“Our plan outlines our vision for the future development and expansion of UL covering 50,000 square metres of state-of-the-art research, student, sports and academic facilities. The granting of this loan facility clearly indicates a very welcome endorsement of UL’s development plans by the European Investment Bank. We look forward to working closely with the EIB to optimise the benefits which this will deliver for UL, for Limerick and for Ireland and the EU as we extend UL’s role as a dynamic agent of economic, social and cultural development. UL is committed to making a major contribution to the Limerick 2030 Economic and Spatial Plan which will allow us all to work in partnership to deliver a true renaissance of Limerick.” said Professor Don Barry, president of UL speaking at the launch of the UL Capital Development Plan 2014-2018 this morning.
“Expansion of UL’s research and academic facilities, as well as a new library and student facilities will transform education and student life for future generations. Whilst the new City Centre campus will provide an economic boost and new living accommodation in Limerick. The European Investment Bank is pleased to continue its support for university investment in Ireland and help implement UL’s Capital Development Plan, an ambitious framework for transforming education opportunities over the coming years,” said Jonathan Taylor, European Investment Bank vice president.
The off-campus capital developments are valued at €62mn and represent 30% of the overall investment of the plan. Funding for the remainder of UL’s Capital Development Plan will be secured from a number of sources, including philanthropic donors, state grants, commercial activities and UL funding.
Minister Noonan stated: “This is very positive news for UL and indeed for Limerick and the wider region as a whole. The University Capital Investment Plan will ensure the university is a world-class campus at the heart of Limerick and will create 1,000 jobs in Limerick. This is a great boost for the city and I look forward to work commencing in the new year.”
Other highlights of the UL Capital Development Plan, which will roll out over five years, include:
- The Glucksman Library Phase 2 will double the size of the current library facility with a dedicated climate controlled Special Collections Unit
- A dedicated purpose-built team training centre for the Munster Rugby Team
- A second 25m pool incorporating a diving pool as part of an extension to the University Arena
- A pitch development project which will see the development of six state-of-the-art flood lit grass training pitches
- The Bernal Building currently under construction which will further strengthen the university’s science zone along with phase 2 of the Materials and Surface Science Institute which consists of a 2,750m2 extension currently under construction
- A new student centre building including meeting rooms, social areas, students union facilities, shops, cinema, concert facilities and a visitorcentre incorporating the University reception and offices.