Michael Noonan urges Limerick city to ‘think San Francisco and Barcelona’

Aine Fitzgerald

Reporter:

Aine Fitzgerald

LIMERICK should look to “creative” and “open” cities like San Francisco and Barcelona in terms of redeveloping and rebranding the image of its city according to Minister for Finance, Michael Noonan.

LIMERICK should look to “creative” and “open” cities like San Francisco and Barcelona in terms of redeveloping and rebranding the image of its city according to Minister for Finance, Michael Noonan.

Mr Noonan was speaking at a civic reception in his honour where he said that the new-look Limerick city will have the amenities “that people need in their daily lives as well as good, modern, high skilled jobs for the sons and daughters of the city and county.”

“That is not a dream, that is a realisable objective for all of you as councillors and I would ask you to continue as you have started in cooperation with everybody,” said Mr Noonan at the reception at County Hall which was attended by councillors from across all parties.

The amalgamation of the local authorities in Limerick in 2014, Mr Noonan described as “a very exciting phase” for councillors “where you will not only have responsibility for a beautiful county but you will have responsibility for a city which needs development but which will act as a focal point for that county.”

“The history of Limerick goes back so far and has been through so many phases. It is now going to launch again into a development phase which I think will be extremely exciting where the energy of the city will be rebranded, where it will be a city of both sport and culture, where the cultural amenities and the amenities that people need in their daily lives will all be there and as well as that we will have good, modern, high skilled jobs for the sons and daughters of the city and county,” continued Mr Noonan.

The Fine Gael minister acknowledged that the councillors had “pulled their weight” to realise an integrated city and county “that we can all be extremely proud of”.

“If you just think that the most successful cities are the cities that are creative,” he continued. “There is a great connection between creativity and the development of modern cities. Think of Barcelona, think of San Francisco. What they all have in common is they are based on creativity and they are also based on openness. They invite in a stranger and they respect the new people who come – they respect the new Irishness and I think that is most exciting,” he said.

For more, see this weekend’s Limerick Leader, print edition