University of Limerick launches €224m plan

THE University of Limerick has unveiled ambitious expansion plans after the European Investment Bank (EIB) agreed to provide €100m for its four year development plan.

The loan was formally agreed by Professor Don Barry, President of the University of Limerick and Jonathan Taylor, European Investment Bank Vice President responsible for Ireland, and witnessed by the Minister for Finance, Michael Noonan.

The university’s ambitious €224m Capital Development Plan, which will run between 2014 and 2018, 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 the University of Limerick covering 50,000 square metres of state-of-the-art research, student, sports and academic facilities,” said Prof Don Barry at the launch of the plan.

“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.” he added.

Jonathan Taylor has endorsed the plan. “Expansion of the University of Limerick’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,” he said.

Around 1,000 jobs are expected to be created over the lifetime of the development plan with 290 full-time high value positions and 710 construction related positions over the period of the plan.

The off-campus capital developments are valued at €62m and represent 30% of the overall investment of the Development 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 University of Limerick funding.

“This is very positive news for the University of Limerick 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,” said Mr Noon SourceL Limerick Leader.