Minister Humphreys announces funding for seven projects under the Rural Regeneration and Development Fund
- €5.5 million to support the development of regeneration projects in rural Ireland
- Seven counties to benefit from latest round of funding
- Minister Humphreys confirms that over €166m has been allocated under RRDF
Heather Humphreys TD, Minister for Rural and Community Development, has today (Wednesday, 5th August) announced the allocation of €5.5 million in funding to seven projects under the €1 billion Rural Regeneration and Development Fund.
This is the second and final announcement of successful projects arising from the latest Category 2 call.
On 25th June 2020, €13 million in Government funding was announced for 24 projects.
The successful projects announced today are:
Kildare – The Kildare Town Renewal Plan: Over €1.75 million in RRDF funding has been approved. Led by Kildare County Council, this project will prepare plans for the redesign of the Market Square and for a pedestrian link from the Kildare Village Outlet into the Town Centre.
Limerick: Dereliction and re-use for housing development in the core of towns and villages in Limerick. €1 million in RRDF funding has been approved, in addition to €1.5m already provided to support this project. Led by Limerick City and County Council, this proposal will prepare plans to bring derelict properties back into use, with an emphasis on housing, in the core areas of towns and villages in rural Limerick.
Kerry – Cahersiveen Town Centre Regeneration Project: €1 million in RRDF funding has been approved, in addition to over €1 million in support already provided. Led by Kerry County Council, this project will design the interventions necessary to regenerate key areas within the town centre, including through the preparation of a Daniel O’Connell Quarter.
Tipperary – A Pathway to the Regeneration of Cahir Town Centre. Almost €633,000 has been approved. Led by Tipperary County Council, this project will progress plans for the redesign of the town centre, with a firm focus on showcasing Cahir’s historic character.
Meath – Athboy Town Centre. This project has been approved €608,250 in funding. Led by Meath County Council, this project will design upgrades to the public realm, street landscaping and public spaces and allow for the reorganisation of public transport and vehicle access.
Wicklow: Placemaking for Newtownmountkennedy. €357,750 has been approved under RRDF funding. Led by Wicklow County Council, this project will develop plans to enhance the public realm in the town centre, with a view to improving the pedestrian experience and creating new focal points within the town centre.
Sligo: The Public Realm Enhancement of the villages of Strandhill and Rosses Point. The Department has allocated €202,000 in funding. Led by Sligo County Council, this project will develop plans for pedestrian-friendly village centres through re-designed public realm areas, walkways and addressing dereliction.
Announcing the successful projects today, Minister Humphreys said:
“The Rural Regeneration and Development Fund has already established itself as a key driver of economic and social progress in rural Ireland. I view the Fund as an invaluable resource, providing the targeted, large-scale investment necessary to drive economic recovery and sustainable development in rural areas facing the challenges arising from the COVID-19 crisis.
“The projects I am announcing today and the projects already being delivered with the assistance of the Fund are supporting communities and businesses across the country, providing a cash injection which is boosting economic activity in many of the areas and regions most in need of it.
“This Fund has now made available over €166 million in funding for projects worth a combined total of €237 million. I am convinced that these projects are laying the foundations for economic and social progress in rural Ireland for many years to come, allowing rural communities to position themselves to take advantage of the opportunities which will emerge as recovery continues.”
The Fund is part of the Department of Rural and Community Development’s Rural Development Investment Programme which is funded under Project Ireland 2040. The Fund is providing €1 billion in investment over 10 years to support the regeneration and development of rural town, villages and outlying areas. Initial funding of €315 million was allocated on a phased basis over the period 2019 to 2022. To date, the Fund has now provided €166 million for 139 projects across Ireland, worth a total of €237 million.
Today’s announcement relates to Category 2 of the Fund, which provides seed capital funding for strategic, large-scale projects which will assist in delivering town and village regeneration and contribute to economic development and recovery. Category 2 seeks to provide a ready-made pipeline of projects which can be progressed in the future with the support of the Fund or other funding streams. The funding provided today will allow for further development of the projects to take place enabling them to be developed to a high standard and be ready to commence works in the future. The applications for funding were subjected to a comprehensive assessment process by the Department, with oversight provided by an independent Project Advisory Board, made up of representatives drawn from key Government Departments along with external independent experts.
Announcing the successful projects today, Minister Humphreys said:
“I believe that the projects I am announcing today will prepare the way for exciting, innovative and productive interventions in the areas which will benefit. The funding provided will allow projects to be developed to the point that they are ready for construction, assisting with the often significant costs associated with bringing ambitious projects of this type to full readiness. ”
Minister Humphreys was speaking today during a visit to Boyle, Co. Roscommon, where she visited the site of the vacant Royal Hotel which will shortly be re-developed as an enterprise hub and remote-working facility with the support of the Rural Regeneration and Development Fund.
The Minister also visited the new Boyle-Lough Key Cycle Corridor, supported by Outdoor Recreation Infrastructure Scheme, also part of her Department’s Rural Development Investment Programme. These and many other projects in Boyle town centre are the product of Boyle 2040, an ambitious and comprehensive framework for the social and economic regeneration of the town core, delivered by Roscommon County Council and Boyle Town Team.
The Minister commented:
“The plans for the regeneration of Boyle are a superb example of collaborative, joined-up thinking in a town planning context, taking account of all the opportunities and challenges faced by the town. I am excited by the development taking place here, which has enjoyed the support of the range of schemes in my Department’s Rural Investment Programme.
“Projects such as the refurbishment of the Royal Hotel as new enterprise and remote working facilities in the centre of the town are seeking to build upon some of the opportunities emerging from this crisis and reinforce the reputation of the West as a natural base for entrepreneurs, start-ups and ambitious companies”.
The Minister also highlighted that the third call for Category 1 proposals under the Fund is now open, seeking ambitious, shovel-ready projects which will support the drive for economic recovery and deliver sustainable regeneration and development in rural towns and villages.
Further details of the Rural Regeneration and Development Fund are available on the Department of Rural and Community Development website at www.gov.ie/drcd.