Connacht Rugby’s new plans for a €30-million redevelopment of the Sportsground will transform its home into a top-class 12,000-capacity stadium and high-performance training centre.
That’s according to Galway East TD Ciaran Cannon, who said that the plans will make the venue ‘fit for 21st-century purpose’ and see considerable economic and sporting benefits accrue for Galway and the wider region.
The development will cost in the region of €30m and will have a capacity of 12,000 spectators.
It is intended that the development will be funded through a combination of public funds, most notably through the Large Scale Sports Infrastructure Fund, and private funding.
Minister Cannon said: “I am delighted with Connacht Rugby`s plans which will ultimately make this venue, first opened over 90 years ago, fit for 21st-century purpose’.
“While there have been modifications to and investment in the venue in recent years, it is quite clear that it is no longer capable of providing teams and their supporters with either the facilities or the experience that they should have’.
“This new plan will also see considerable economic and sporting benefits accrue for Galway and the wider region, with Connacht Rugby already estimated to be worth €34.4 million to the regional economy’.
“I am especially pleased that the new facility is envisaged to be made available to other organisations if the demand arises which extends its use to the wider sporting community.”
The Fine Gael TD commended those associated with this plan including the management team at Connacht Rugby, the freehold owners, the Galway Agricultural and Sports Society, and the Irish Greyhound Board.
“This collaboration will contribute greatly to Galway`s economy and consolidate jobs in the sporting sector and I look forward to seeing the plan come to fruition,” he added.