Tuesday, 27 February 2018

Questions (227)

Frank O'Rourke


227. Deputy Frank O'Rourke asked the Minister for Education and Skills the timeframe for investment in listed projects (details supplied) at Maynooth university following the commitment in the National Development Plan 2019 to 2027 to invest in the university; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [9390/18]

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Written answers (Question to Education)

The National Development Plan (NDP) 2018-2027 references the campus development plans of the seven universities, including Maynooth University.  These plans total over €3 billion and will be funded with a mix of own resources, borrowing, philanthropy and Exchequer grants. 

The NDP also signals Exchequer investments of €2.2 billion in higher education infrastructure over the coming decade. This welcome increase in funding will present major new opportunities for the higher education sector. However, it should be noted that the signficant ramp up in investment will take place over time and particularly in the second half of the NDP period.  In that context, a capital investment prioritisation framework, together with updated appraisal approaches, will be developed over the coming months to inform funding decisions and to ensure that maxiumum impact and value for money can be achieved from Exchequer investments. 

Officials from my Department have met with representatives from Maynooth University in relation to their campus development plans.  A Cost-Benefit Analysis for the next phase of campus development is currently being prepared by the University and will be submitted to the Higher Education Authority (HEA) and the Department.