The Irish government has confirmed that it will make a €1bn investment over the next decade in the development of small towns, villages and rural areas as it launches a call for proposals under its €1Bn Rural Regeneration and Development Fund.
Michael Ring, TD, the Minister for Rural and Community Development, has… launched a call for proposals under Category 2 of the Government’s Rural Regeneration and Development Fund, a key component of Project Ireland 2040.
Under Project Ireland 2040, the Rural Regeneration and Development Fund, administered by the Department of Rural and Community Development, will provide €1 billion in investment over 10 years to support the renewal of small towns, villages and outlying rural areas through transformative large-scale projects. Initial funding of €315 million is being allocated on a phased basis over the period 2019 to 2022.
Category 2 of the Rural Regeneration and Development Fund supports the early development of projects to enable them to reach a stage where the concept is developed to a high standard and the project is in a position to commence works. Projects could subsequently apply for further funding through Category 1 of the Fund, which supports the delivery and completion of projects which have full planning permission and other necessary consents in place.
Announcing the opening of this call for the Fund, Minister Ring said:
“The Rural Regeneration and Development Fund represents an unprecedented opportunity to deliver the scale of investment necessary to allow rural communities to continue to thrive and to help achieve balanced regional growth. It is already making its presence felt in rural Ireland.
“With a 10 year Fund it is important that we provide the right support to assist a vision to be developed to the point that it is shovel-ready. There can be significant work involved in getting a project to this point.
“This Category 2 funding can be used for a variety of purposes including for example, the development of a detailed project design, preparation for the planning process and, if necessary, the purchase of relevant properties or lands.’
“I look forward to seeing the exciting proposals which come through this process.”
The Fund seeks to support proposals which will drive increased activity in our rural towns and villages and they can relate to, for example, enterprise, culture, community, recreation or tourism development.
It is open to Local Authorities, Local Development Companies, State agencies, other Government Departments, philanthropic funders, the private sector and communities. The Lead Partner must be a State-funded body but collaboration between parties, including with communities, is strongly encouraged.
The closing date for the receipt of proposals is 12pm on Friday, 28th February 2020. Applications should be submitted electronically on the official application form, which is available on the website of the Department of Rural and Community Development.
Ful details of the Rural Regeneration and Development Fund are available on gov.ie at: https://www.gov.ie/en/policy-information/c77144-rural-regeneration-and-development-fund/