The Government has today announced a grant of €7.5m from its Capital Development Programme for the development of the Kerry Sports Academy, at the Institute of Technology, Tralee North Campus.
This €15m academy will be the largest educational capital project to be undertaken in Kerry in the coming years, and will be home to the Health and Leisure Programmes at the Institute, UNESCO Chair in Inclusive Physical Education, Sport, Fitness and Recreation, CARA - National Centre for Adapted Physical Activity, Kerry GAA Centre of Excellence and Comhaltas Ceolteóití Eireann in Kerry.
Dr. Oliver Murphy, President of the IT, Tralee, in welcoming the announcement stated “The Kerry Sports Academy is a very exciting project, which will provide the Institute with teaching facilities of an international standard, in addition to providing an excellent sporting resource for the county and the region. The IT, Tralee has an international reputation for leadership in inclusion and adapted physical activity and is the only higher education provider globally to be awarded a UNESCO Chair. This is testimony to the excellence of the Institute’s work in including people with disabilities in physical education, sport fitness and recreation.
Commenting on the announcement Mr. Dick Spring, Chairman of the IT, Tralee Foundation Board said, ‘’The Foundation is extremely grateful for the government support, which is a tremendous boost for the project. The Institute of Technology, Tralee plays a key role in the economic and social development of the county and the main objective of the Foundation is to raise funds for the future development of the Institute, with the priority project being the development of the Kerry Sports Academy. Our fundraising is going extremely well and we hope to be on site in the first quarter of 2016’’.
The Institute of Technology, Tralee has over 3,000 students, employing 350 people and providing a financial contribution of circa €60 million annually to the local economy. During the construction period the Kerry Sports Academy will create 120 jobs and is a further step in the plan by the IT Tralee to relocate all of its teaching and research activities from the South Campus to the North Campus in Dromtacker. The project will be completed within 18 months and the academy will open in 2017.