€75 million has been announced in funding for 24 landmark regeneration projects in rural communities across the country.
The move was announced by Minister for Rural and Community Development, Heather Humphreys today (Monday, April 19).
The funding, which is being provided under the €1 billion Rural Regeneration and Development Fund, will support the key objectives of Our Rural Future – the Government’s ambitious new policy for Rural Ireland.
Examples of successful projects include:
- €8.78 million for Ballybofey-Stranolar, Co. Donegal: Restoration of the old Ritz Cinema Heritage Building;
- €6 million for Ballymahon, Co. Longford: Renovation of three historic town centre buildings into a co-working space, youth hub and a community centre;
- €4 million for Youghal Co. Cork: Derelict site and buildings on the main street to be transformed into a new library, remote learning hub and community space;
- €2.8 million for the Thurles Market Quarter, Co Tipperary: This project will renovate a 19th Century vacant agriculture building and associated car park to create the new Thurles Market Quarter;
- €2 million for Remote Working Hub on Iveragh Peninsula, Co Kerry: This project will deliver a digital hub that will provide workspace for up to 50 people on the peninsula;
- €2.55 million for Portumna Courthouse Arts Centre, Co. Galway: The vacant courthouse will be the site of a new multi-purpose arts, performance, remote working and social space;
- €8.2 million for Cardonagh, Co Donegal: This will see the regeneration of an old department store in the heart of the town-centre to become a new digital fabrication laboratory and coworking hub, deliver a social space for young people and also provide a creative makers hub in the town for creative and craft industries;
- €1.9 million for Dromahair, Co Leitrim: This project will see the regeneration of an old hotel building and site in the town centre into a new library, e-learning, cultural and creative hub;
- €7.6 million for Kinnegad, Co Westmeath: This project will see the regeneration of an old school in the town centre into a community library, remote learning, education and training space;
- €1.3 million for Newbliss Enterprise and Digital Hub, Co Monaghan: This project will deliver the full regeneration and redevelopment of Newbliss Courthouse as an enterprise and digital hub;
- €2.8m for Omeath, Co Meath: This project will regenerate and revitalise the centre of Omeath providing a pedestrian zone in the village centre and improved linkages to the Great Eastern Greenway.
According to the Department of Rural and Community Development, a large number of the successful projects provide for the regeneration of vacant town centre buildings as remote working and hot-desking facilities.
These projects will support remote workers and commuters to work from and remain in their own local community.
Announcing the funding today, Minister Humphreys said:
“Just three weeks ago, the Government launched Our Rural Future, the most ambitious and transformational policy for rural development in decades.
“Today we are putting that policy firmly into action and delivering major investment aimed at town centre regeneration and supporting remote working.
“These projects will breathe new life into towns and villages across the country, making them attractive and vibrant places for people to live, work, socialise and raise a family.
“It is absolutely clear that local authorities and communities across the country have picked up the ball on remote working and ran with it. I am delighted that so many of the successful projects today will see the development of remote working and hot-desking facilities in rural towns and villages.
“In the coming weeks, I will be inviting new applications under the Rural Regeneration and Development Fund and bringing forward an enhanced Town and Village Renewal Scheme which will provide rural communities with more opportunities to make exciting and impactful projects like these a reality,” the minister concluded.
A full list of the projects funded can be found on the department’s website.