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Briefing on Project Ireland 2040 in NUI Galway

Project Ireland 2040 is the Government’s €116bn plan to re-imagine Ireland and to prepare for a future society which will have an extra one million people with 660,000 more people at work. Project Ireland 2040 links planning and investment for the first time, and, with 50% of the projected population growth planned for towns, villages and rural areas, balances rural and urban investment.

Speaking at NUI Galway, Taoiseach Leo Varadkar said:

I am delighted to be in NUIG today to talk to you about Project Ireland 2040 and what this plan means for you. Project Ireland 2040 is a plan that will affect all of our citizens over the coming years, it is a plan for the entire country, one of balanced rural and urban investment, and one that looks to prepare us for the challenges, such as Brexit, and indeed the opportunities that will present themselves over the coming years.

Project Ireland 2040 recognises the importance of Galway and the west of Ireland in planning for the future of our country and to ensure balanced regional growth. Galway City will continue to play a vital role in the region, with a greater focus on a more compact, public transport-centred approach to development.

Key measures in Project Ireland 2040 for the region include:

  • Support for projects like the plans for Galway City Regeneration. 
  • Transport projects are planned to connect our cities and regions, projects like the proposed Galway ring road, the Moycullen bypass and a €200m investment in the BusConnects programme in Galway. 
  • Investment in higher education is a priority in Project Ireland 2040, supporting projects in the West of Ireland including new student residences in NUIG, a new STEM building in Galway-Mayo Institute of Technology, and the establishment of the Connacht Ulster Alliance consisting of Galway-Mayo Institute of Technology, IT Sligo and Letterkenny IT. 
  • Investment in healthcare for the region includes new dedicated ambulatory elective-only hospital facilities for Galway and development of the Galway Emergency Department and ward block. 
  • Project Ireland 2040 also recognises the importance of investing in our culture and heritage, with support of €15m in principle committed for Galway European City of Culture 2020 and investment in Coole Park and Connemara National Park.

Four new funds to stimulate renewal and investment in rural and urban areas, the environment and innovation from part of Project Ireland 2040:
                €2bn Urban Regeneration and Development Fund
                €1bn Rural Development Fund
                €500m Climate Action Fund
                €500m Disruptive Technologies Fund

For details on what Project Ireland means for you, see