Minister Harris gives go-ahead for next phase of proposed capital investment for TU Dublin
By Maura O'Shea
Posted: 11 January, 2023
Minister for Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science Simon Harris has today announced that Technological University Dublin (TUD) has been given the go-ahead to proceed to the next phase of the project proposal development for a ‘Design & Construct’ Sustainable Building Centre on their Broombridge Campus.
The project envisages the refurbishment of a building in TU Dublin’s satellite facility in Broombridge in order to utilise it for core academic space to address capacity. It is anticipated that the proposed state-of-the-art campus would build capacity for the greater Dublin Area and beyond.
Minister Harris confirmed that TU Dublin has been successful under the Technological Sector Strategic Projects Fund (TSSPF) and is now approved to proceed to develop the preliminary business case for a multi-disciplinary teaching and learning facility at Broombridge. It is envisaged that the new building will serve students in the areas of Architecture, Engineering and Construction.
Speaking today, Minister Harris said: “Today is a key milestone as we see TU Dublin emerge from the first part of a robust strategic assessment process, and move to the next phase of the project life cycle development, which will see the development of preliminary business case.
“This proposed new building would accommodate 1,400 new learners in key skills demand such as retrofit, low carbon technologies, Modern Methods of Construction (MMC), and in energy efficiency.
“It is anticipated that its creation would be a Beacon for Sustainability and Climate Action, creating a Retrofit hub in one of the largest residential areas requiring retrofit in the city.
“Investment will play an important role in supporting the technological sector as drivers of regional development by allowing them to better meet the needs of learners in their region, to deepen existing and forge new relationships with business and enterprise and to respond in an agile fashion to future developments.
“The HEA in advancing these capital proposals, is playing a crucial leading role in rolling out the Technological Sector Strategic Projects Fund ensuring a pipeline of key strategic projects delivers for our learner, economic and societal needs, and we need to keep these objectives at the heart of all our decision making. The outcomes of the preliminary business case stage will inform the development of a pipeline of projects and future capital investment decisions.
“The proposal developments to be advanced under the Technological Strategic Projects Fund, including 5 nationwide already announced, will complement significant investment right across the technological sector and further education and training sector.”
Minister for Public Expenditure, National Development Plan Delivery, and Reform Paschal Donohoe, who attended TU Dublin with Minister Harris today, said: “Since its inception, the Technological University (TU) agenda has sought to transform the Higher Education landscape and support the delivery of a highly skilled workforce, capable of meeting current as well as future economic and societal challenges at a national and regional level.
“This investment in TU Dublin through the Technological Sector Strategic Projects Fund (TSSPF), in addition to the significant Exchequer resources provided to date, further highlights the Government’s support for the development and delivery of the Government’s TU agenda.
“Ensuring these Universities are well equipped to deliver on our national ambitions is key. In total, including the NTF, approximately €4.1bn will be allocated to the Higher Education, Further Education and Training (FET) and Research and Innovation sectors in 2023. This reflects the importance of these sectors to the economy and the Government’s commitment to support learners through them.”
President of TU Dublin Professor David FitzPatrick, welcomed the announcement: “TU Dublin is delighted to commence 2023 with this hugely significant announcement for the University, our students and the local community in Dublin 7, which will deliver a world-class multidisciplinary learning and industry engagement environment for students across the faculties of Engineering & Built Environment and Computing, Digital and Data, from apprenticeship to PhD.
“Critically, the research, knowledge generation and skills development activities undertaken in Design + Construct will provide creative solutions that will be core to the sector’s efforts in addressing its key sustainability challenges that are contributing to the Climate Crisis, acting as a living construction laboratory encompassing best practices in sustainable design and construction.”
Ciarán McCaffrey, Head of Capital Programmes in the HEA, said: “We welcome today’s announcement that TU Dublin are to proceed to the next phase of project proposal development under the Technological Sector Strategic Projects Fund (TSSPF).
“The TSSPF is a key driver in delivering on the ambitions of the technological sector, aiding the sector in meeting the increased demand for education and driving more balanced regional development. The HEA look forward to working with all Higher Education Institutions, whose proposals are moving to the next phase of the TSSPF, in developing their preliminary business cases.”