THE Minister for the Environment, Phil Hogan, says he intends travelling to Limerick in the New Year to personally review the progress being made in the Limerick regneration programme.
Minister Hogan has told the Dail that the new joint authority for Limerick will take over responsibility for the regeneration programme during 2012 and that he is â€œparticularly anxiousâ€ to ensure that significant progress is made.
He made his comments in response to a question from Sinn Fein TD, Dessie Ellis who said: â€œI am concerned at what is happening in Limerick, where there has been little progress in terms of housing units delivered. A great deal of preparatory work has been done, but the delivery has not been substantial.â€
In reply, the minister said he expects that significant progress will be made during 2012.
â€œThe coming year will see the focus of the regeneration project continue to shift from the preparatory, relocation and demolition work within estates to construction and refurbishment,â€ he said adding: â€œNew housing projects are expected to commence in Ballinacurra Weston, Southhill and Kingâ€™s Island, and the first new housing at Cliona Park will be completed.â€
Referrring to the recent purchase of the Opera Centre site Minister Hogan said he hopes that private investment can be secured to help develop the site.
â€œAnywhere we can secure private funding, in conjunction with public moneys, in order to fast-track a project, we will be delighted to do so. However, I understand private investors are finding it difficult to secure funding from financial institutions for that purpose,â€ he said.