Minister Harris approves funding for the purchase of the Waterford Crystal site for South East Technological University
By Maura O'Shea
Posted: 27 March, 2023
Minister for Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science Simon Harris has today confirmed approval has been given to the South East Technological University (SETU) to expand its presence in Waterford.
SETU will purchase 20.3 acres of the 37-acre Waterford Crystal site, the entirety of what was offered to SETU, subject to the necessary due diligence requirements.
This is a significant milestone for the University.
Speaking in Waterford, Minister Harris said:
“This is a major moment in the development of SETU. The purchase of the site will allow SETU expand and grow, and crucially embed in the city of Waterford.
“We know the history of this site. Once a bustling site of business and tourism, the site has been largely derelict since the closure of Waterford Crystal over 14 years ago.
“Today is a new dawn for this site. Here SETU will grow and this site will once again become a bustling site for students, research, enterprise and for the people of Waterford through creation of an active and dynamic University-Enterprise Quarter.“
The purchase of this site satisfies a number of wider local and regional objectives through the reusing/repurposing of a prominent brownfield site in the city.
This investment will allow SETU to cater for future student growth, address the current shortfall in space requirements and allow the Technological University to be a driver of economic and social development in Waterford.
The President of SETU has warmly welcomed today’s announcement. Professor Veronica Campbell said:
“I would like to thank Minister Harris and the HEA for the support of our collective vision and for providing the first phase of funding to allow that vision become a reality. Our work to realise a University-Enterprise Quarter on the Waterford Crystal site will begin now in earnest and we look forward to developing this vision with all of our stakeholders and regional partners.
“As a university embedded in our region our ambition is to bring together academia, research, industry and our communities to create a hub of knowledge, learning, enterprise, innovation and creativity.”
Ciarán McCaffrey, Head of Capital Programmes in the HEA welcomed the announcement by the Minister for Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science, and said:
“We welcome this significant milestone in the acquisition of the Waterford Crystal site to facilitate future expansion, which has long been an ambition for South East Technological University. The site will enable SETU to expand and grow while also helping realise the transformative vision of a University-Enterprise Quarter within the city of Waterford.”