Part of the Opera Centre site will get a new lease of life next week when it becomes home to an economic hub, employing over 60 people.
Limerick City and County Council’s economic development, property and planning units are merging into one directorate of the new local authority, and will open in Patrick Street on Monday.
The unit will take over the former AIB Bank premises, which closed ahead of the now defunct shopping centre plan for the site.
Instead, 55 local authority staff will move from City and County Hall, and this will rise to a total of 67 by the end of May.
Economic development director Oliver O’Loughlin said the location will provide a better experience for all customers.
It is anticipated that the unit will become a ‘one-stop shop’ for enterprise, with information on grant aid, and other supports available in one place.
“Overall, it’s an increased level of service for the customer and an additional facility. It is a key part of our plan to re-develop the Patrick Street site since it was purchased by the local authority last year,” he said.
He added that talks remain ongoing with the University of Limerick and Revenue on proposed moves to the Patrick Street area.
Under the Limerick 2030 plan, it is anticipated Revenue’s current base in Sarsfield House will be demolished, and they will move into office space in the Opera Centre area.
“We have made significant progress in the Patrick Street and Ellen Street areas of the site since it has come into our ownership such as the opening of a new disc parking zone in Michael Street and the former Cahill May Roberts Building has been utilised by Limerick City Build Company on a short term basis,” he added.
Renovations and fit-out of the building are complete, and staff will move in the coming days.
Customers are being warned of disruptions, particularly on Friday March 21. However, online access to planning queries will not be affected.
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