The €2 billion Urban Regeneration and Development Fund (URDF) was launched as part of Project Ireland 2040, to support the compact growth and sustainable development of Ireland’s five cities, regional drivers and other large urban centres.
A total of 189 applications were submitted to my Department under the first call for proposals. The full list of applications received by my Department, including details of counties and categories, is available on my Department's website at the following link: www.housing.gov.ie/sites/default/files/publications/files/urban_regeneration_and_development_fund_2019_-_list_of_applications_received_1.pdf .
There are two types of project: Category A - projects that are 'ready to go' - and Category B - projects which are at an earlier stage (Master-planning/Feasibility) and which will assist in forming a future pipeline of projects, as the URDF is a rolling fund, with €2 billion available to 2027.
All submissions were assessed following a three stage process and against a 10 point pre-assigned assessment criteria framework. An initial appraisal process on all submissions was carried out within my Department, with preliminary recommendations being made to a Project Advisory Board (PAB) who provided high-level input and advice as applicable per category or proposal. Following this process, preliminary proposals were presented to a management committee who brought the final recommendations to me for consideration.
On 26 November 2018, I announced details of the successful proposals for funding, details of which are published on my Department's website at the following link:
Funding of €100 million has been allocated in respect of 88 successful proposals, combining both category A and B projects, of which a significant amount of expenditure will be incurred in 2019. While an initial allocation of €71 million was provided for the URDF as published in the Department’s 2019 Estimate, it was determined, in the context of the accommodation of increased costs of the development of the National Children’s Hospital, that €13 million of drawdown under the URDF could be re-profiled from 2019 to 2020 without any delay in the progression of successful proposals. I am satisfied that the revised allocation of €58 million will be spent in full in respect of URDF grants for 2019.
Successful bid proposals have been approved in principle, subject to final agreement of technical details with my Department, and the funding allocations should be regarded as an initial investment of support for the projects. My Department is currently engaging with successful applicants in respect of the progression of their proposals in 2019. This process will be finalised shortly, following which project conditions and formal grant agreements will be concluded.
It is expected that a second call for proposals for 2020 funding will be launched later in Q1 2019 and a workshop for applicants will be organised in advance. It is envisaged that this application period will run until summer 2019.