Minister Harris announces €40 million in capital funding for college campuses across the country

By Amber Flynn

Posted: 20 November, 2023

Minister for Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science Simon Harris TD has today announced €40 million in capital funding for college campuses across the country.

The funding will be provided through the Devolved Grant system and will allow universities make a number of important changes across their campuses.

The grant can cover measures to make the college campuses more energy efficient, to undergo health and safety works, or minor upgrade and refurbishment works.

Speaking today, Minister Harris said:

“I am really pleased to allocate a further €40 million to our college campuses across the country.

“This will allow universities invest to ensure their capital stock is fit-for-purpose and to operate sustainably.

“Adequate levels of maintenance are required across the third level sector to prevent deterioration of capital infrastructure and ensure that facilities remain up-to-date, fit for purpose and respond to climate objectives. This funding will allow third level institutes to do that.

“This Department continues to provide the resources needed to ensure our third level sector can offer the best facilities to its students and its staff.  Today is another example of that.”

This funding is in addition to €40 million provided earlier this year. It is being provided now to allow universities to plan a more strategic approach to minor capital work programmes.

Some of the categories of funding to be covered by the grant will include:

Energy efficiency and decarbonisation related measures
Health and safety works
Minor upgrade and refurbishment works
Universal Access-related upgrades
ICT investments
Equipment purchase and renewal
Minister Harris added:

“Once the provision of this Devolved Grant for 2024/2025 is rolled out to the higher education sector, it will be the fifth year it has increased to €40 million – a signal of this Government’s ongoing commitment to higher education and to delivering world class facilities.

“Our third level sector faces significant challenges in responding to climate targets and this capital grant will assist in making energy efficiency and decarbonisation upgrades.

“Frontloading this funding in November 2023 for the 2024/2025 academic year supports higher education institutes and provides more certainty, which should increase the overall effectiveness of the scheme and help support a more strategic approach to capital work programmes.”

Seven universities, five Technological Universities, two Institutes of Technology and five other colleges are benefitting from this devolved grant.

Ciarán McCaffrey, Head of Capital Programmes in the HEA added:

“Today’s announcement of a Devolved Capital Grant of €40 million is very much welcomed for the higher education sector.

“This grant, which is provided through the HEA, is intended to support Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) in addressing necessary infrastructural improvements while also allowing for energy efficiency and universal access upgrades as well as investments in ICT. This grant supports a range of capital priorities across the sector while at the same time improving the campus experience for students and staff”.

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