The government has agreed to the allocation of €200,000 in additional funding per year for two years to Mayo County Council to advance the development of the strategic development zone (SDZ) at Ireland West Airport Knock.
According to a statement published on Gov.ie, the funding will be used to put in place dedicated project management, and subsequent engagement of external expertise, to prepare a detailed roadmap for the development of the SDZ.
According to the statement published on Gov.ie, Ireland West Airport Knock advises that the SDZ scheme, if built out to full capacity, could deliver up to 95,025 square metres of commercial, business and enterprise space, 44,000 square metres of aviation economic development and services, and 11,000 square metres of hotel accommodation and conference floorspace.
It has potential to create up to 6,000 jobs, according to the statement published on Gov.ie, which also noted that the preparation of a detailed roadmap for the development of the SDZ will be overseen by a steering group of Mayo County Council, IWAK, Enterprise Ireland, IDA Ireland and the Western Development Commission.
The statement published on Gov.ie quoted Taoiseach, Leo Varadkar TD as saying, "This allocation of government funding to Mayo County Council is an important further step in the development of the strategic development zone at Ireland West Airport Knock. It also reaffirms the government's commitment to realising the potential of the SDZ, which can make a significant contribution to the economic development of Mayo, the western region, and Atlantic Economic Corridor.
"The government has prioritised balanced regional development and the Knock SDZ is a big part of that with the potential to significantly drive regional economic development. We have more people living and working in rural Ireland than ever before and we will continue to ensure that people can avail of good job opportunities in the communities in which they want to live.
"I look forward to seeing the roadmap for this project and the recommendations of its steering group in due course. Thanks to all involved for their efforts to date and their work to bring real benefits to the region."
The statement published on Gov.ie also quoted Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment Simon Coveney TD as saying, "This is great news and I strongly support this new round of funding. I will be closely following the progress over the next two-years so we can get the absolute most for the West out of the strategic zone."
A separate statement published on IrelandWestAirport.com quoted Ireland West Airport chairman Arthur French as saying, "We welcome today’s announcement of funding by the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment which will provide initial funding over a two-year period for the development of a detailed plan with key stakeholders for the future development of the Strategic Development Zone landbank around the Airport. I wish to thank An Taoiseach, Leo Varadkar, TD, Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment, Simon Coveney TD, and Minister of State in the Department of Enterprise, Dara Calleary, TD, for their important backing of the project as well as thanking our local politicians and TDs and local authority partners for their continued support in progressing the development of the strategic development zone. We look forward to working with the steering group in the coming months to deliver on the undoubted potential that the strategic development zone provides, in harnessing the economic potential of the Atlantic Economic Corridor along the northwestern seaboard from Galway to Donegal. This commitment by government today will hopefully be the platform from which all key stakeholders will build a cohesive model using the strategic development zone for balanced regional economic development and significant new job creation."
© 2023 Hospitality Ireland – your source for the latest industry news. Article by Dave Simpson. Click subscribe to sign up for the Hospitality Ireland print edition.