WORK on a new third-level campus located in the heart of Ennis has got underway ahead of its September scheduled open date.
When completed the Bindon Street campus is set to become the new home of Limerick Institute of Technology (LIT) in Ennis, providing an expanded level of daytime undergraduate education through the CAO.
It is envisaged that the project will enable a substantial increase in higher education activity in Ennis, whilst also opening up the possibility of new evening courses and professional education.
Welcoming the construction phase of the ongoing ambitious project, Mayor of Clare, Councillor Cathal Crowe (FF) said that LIT’s investment in Ennis will have many important benefits for the county town.
“I look forward this new third level educational campus having a significant, positive economic impact for Ennis, contributing to greater footfall in the town centre and regeneration of a building that has been vacant for over 10 years,” he said.
Liam Conneally, Director of Economic Development, Clare County Council, reiterated Cllr Crowe’s sentiments and said that LIT’s new campus will be a major boost for the town and further afield.
“This new campus will complement our objective of increasing third level educational activities in the county, which will sustain population growth and new employment opportunities,” he said.
“The new facility will also increase the scope for further adult education evening training courses and professional development opportunities.
“We anticipate that building works will be substantially completed during summer 2019 with the opening taking place in September 2019,” added Mr Conneally.
Clare County Council chief executive, Pat Dowling praised the collaboration between the two bodies in ensuring that the exciting project became a reality in recent months.
“The partnership between Clare County Council and LIT is being strengthened to deliver this ambitious project for Ennis and will promote the advancement of educational opportunities for people in Clare and the region,” he said.
“I want to acknowledge the support of elected members and the work being carried out by the Economic Development Directorate within Clare County Council,” added Mr Dowling.
Clare County Council has signed a contract with Jada Projects Ltd for the development which involves the refurbishment of an existing building at Bindon Street.
The initiative comes as a result of a partnership between LIT and Clare County Council, who are making a capital investment of €750,000 towards the project.
The new campus is set to offer programmes in social care, early childhood care and education, and marketing and management from September onwards.