In 2016, the North Quays in Waterford was the subject of a Strategic Development Zone (SDZ) order made by the Government, designating the area for mixed-use development, subject to preparation of an SDZ planning scheme, which has since been completed.
Waterford City and County Council submitted a bid for exchequer grant funding as part of the first call under the Urban Regeneration and Development Fund (URDF) in September 2018. On 26 November 2018, I announced initial support of €100m in provisional allocations to a total of 88 projects, including €6m of initial support for the Waterford North Quays Project. The letter confirming this initial support also outlined my agreement in principle to further URDF support for this project.
Under the first URDF call for proposals, the Council's bid included four very significant elements:
- Relocation of the City’s railway station;
- A new pedestrian/cyclist/public transport bridge and associated urban greenway;
- Site access roads and road realignment;
- Off-site roads in the wider north bank of the Suir area in Waterford/Kilkenny.
It is intended that the infrastructural works involved will open up the site, making it more accessible and supporting the achievement of the objectives of the SDZ planning scheme more generally.
While I have agreed in principle to provide further URDF support for the overall project, its complexity means that its proposed composition, costs and sequencing must be refined and further examined so that the precise level of URDF support can be established, and apportioned to the various individual project components.
While the advancement of this project is, in the first instance, a matter for Waterford City & County Council, my Department is engaging actively on an ongoing basis with the Council with a view to early resolution of these matters.