Approval for a €100 million loan from the European Investment Bank should accelerate plans by the University of Limerick to invest €224 million in Plassey, at University Hospital Limerick and – crucially – in the city centre.
Just how much of the gold dust is to be sprinkled in the city centre remains to be worked out but UL president Prof Don Barry underlined his institution’s commitment to playing its part in the regeneration of the heart of Limerick.
“My dream is that in a few years’ time, there will be hundreds of students of the university participating in the life of the city, learning in the city, recreating in the city and contributing to the revitalisation of the Limerick city centre. Limerick is our city and we are its university,” he said.
It remains unclear whether that presence will be in the dilapidated Opera Centre quarter, the option favoured by the site’s owners, Limerick City Council. That level of detail would have to be worked out with the EIB and other potential investors, Prof Barry said.
University Hospital Limerick will also see significant capital works with the development of a new centre for clinical research.