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Go-ahead for Connacht Rugby stadium revamp

Connacht Rugby has secured full planning permission for the redevelopment of its Sportsground stadium.

The initial redevelopment plans were launched following an arrangement reached between the Irish Greyhound Board and the freehold owners of the Sportsground, the Galway Agricultural and Sports Society, with respect to a shared vision for the future of the Sportsground.

The €30m project will include a full redevelopment of the stadium as well as a multi-use indoor High Performance Training Centre.

With €10m in private funding approved through a mixture of Connacht Rugby funds and an approved bank credit facility, the state investment of €20m is now critical to the delivery of the project.

The project has been the subject of an independent economic appraisal by economist Dr Kevin Hannigan of KHSK Economic Consultants who found through a cost benefit analysis that the project will yield a net benefit of 53%.

The strategic benefits of the project to the entire region are also closely aligned with the Government’s National Planning Framework, Project Ireland 2040 as well as the National Sports Policy, all of which highlight the need for a regional spread of capital investment throughout the country. It also fulfils the need for improved sports infrastructure in the region, identified in the Galway City Development Plan.

CEO of Connacht Rugby, Willie Ruane commented:

There has been huge momentum behind the project since we announced last October, and we now have the final granting of planning permission. With 130 people employed throughout the province by Connacht Rugby we are extremely proud of the annual contribution of €34.4m we are making to the regional economy.

We have €10m in private funding to bring to the table through a mixture of Connacht Rugby funds and an approved bank credit facility. The project is now shovel ready and the remaining €20m state investment is critical to its delivery.