NUI Galway plans for new library and innovation district under major strategy

9 Jan 2020562 Views

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NUI Galway. Image: © Jbyard/Stock.adobe.com

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NUI Galway has revealed its new strategy and a major investment in infrastructure, including a new library and innovation district.

NUI Galway has announced a new strategy from now until 2025, titled ‘Shared Vision, Shaped by Values’, which includes a plan to make significant investments in its infrastructure in the areas of culture, learning and sustainability.

This includes the establishment of a new innovation district incorporating a riverside campus on Nun’s Island as well as a cultural and performance space. New on-campus accommodation will also be built alongside a sports facility that will include a water sports centre and 3G artificial turf pitch.

A major retrofitting project to overhaul NUI Galway’s older buildings for increased energy efficiency will take place, in addition to the expansion of the Galway to Connemara Greenway to better connect cyclists and pedestrians with the city.

Furthermore, a new library will be built with new learning and engagement programmes in mind, as well as a ‘city lab’ in partnership with regional and national stakeholders.

‘We must be here for our planet’

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The total cost of the plans has not been revealed, but it’s estimated that the Nun’s Island site alone will cost somewhere in the region of €200m, with €37.5m for the library.

“We are here for our students and society, and now we must be here for our planet too,” said NUI Galway president Prof Ciarán Ó hÓgartaigh.

“Our new strategy recognises how critical this moment is and, as the generation most influenced by climate change, our students demand climate action through our research, our teaching and our influential role as a public institution. NUI Galway is a public good, belonging to the people. In this strategy and in these times, we will use our location for the benefit of Ireland as an institution formed by values.”

Elsewhere in the region, the Galway Technology Centre (GTC) announced it has secured €4m in Government funding to develop its Academy West site.

This, GTC said, will see the creation of 500 direct jobs by enterprises there, boosting the economy of the west of Ireland by €62m each year.

Colm Gorey is a senior journalist with Siliconrepublic.com

editorial@siliconrepublic.com