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Offaly County Council secures €12.2m Funding for Edenderry Regeneration Project

The Minister for Rural and Community Development, Heather Humphreys TD, has announced today 13th May 2024, €12.2m grant for the Edenderry Regeneration Project.  This grant awarded under the Rural Regeneration Development Fund, will allow for the redevelopment of 33/34 JKL Street, the former Tesco Supermarket site into a new Town Centre development consisting of a newly constructed Community Library and Arts Space with outdoor programming areas. The development also includes a new pedestrian and cycle connection from JKL Street to Blundell Avenue and to the greater Blundell Area, site boundary treatment and enabling works and public realm improvements including biodiversity landscaping, accessible parking, resting area and an urban plaza.

This grant requires match funding of 20% from Offaly County Council’s resources of €3m which Offaly County Council has committed to.  The total project will cost €15.2m.

Speaking after the announcement, Cathaoirleach of Offaly County Council, Cllr. Eddie Fitzpatrick said, “this substantial investment in Edenderry will further enhance the town’s potential as an attractive and sustainable place to live, work and visit with a new build community library and arts base a very welcome addition to the town”.  Cllr. Noel Cribbin, Cathaoirleach of Edenderry Municipal District said, “I am delighted with the announcement of such significant investment in the town and thank the Minister, Department of Rural and Community Development, Offaly County Council staff, the design team and the co-operation between the local development groups, businesses and the wider community that led to the success of the application”.

The Chief Executive of Offaly County Council, Anna Marie Delaney said, “I welcome the positive news of this substantial RRDF funding for Edenderry which will contribute to the social and economic revival of the town, as well as addressing the challenge of vacancy and dereliction. Provision of a modern, purpose designed Community Library and Arts Base is a key action in the overall redevelopment of this significant site, providing enhanced permeability to surrounding areas and will complement other positive redevelopments already delivered such as e-Hive and O’Connell Square public realm works, creation of Blundell Avenue and the new inner relief road”.

Offaly County Librarian, Eimear McGinn, welcomed the funding award by RRDF and noted “this will allow Offaly Library Service to deliver significant and meaningful cultural, educational and social benefits to the local communities in the Edenderry area”.

“The planned facility will offer dedicated and sizeable children’s, teen and adult libraries providing quality reading collections and high-speed connectivity to our digital services and resources. The inspiring design will incorporate welcoming leisure reading areas and meeting rooms, a dedicated Sensory Space, Local Studies & Silent Study area, a Changing Places Bathroom, and a generous multipurpose programming space for library and arts service events.”

The Town Regeneration Officer, Olwen Cummins explained how this success is a culmination of years of work and dedication from Offaly County Council staff and members since 2018 “The Rural Regeneration Development Fund has supported 3 previous RRDF projects, the Blundell Master Plan in 2018 which involved extensive community engagement and consultation.  Edenderry Regeneration Phase I created Blundell Avenue, a new link street between Granary Court and Fairgreen, which improved the access to the Blundell Master Plan area.  In 2021 Phase II funded acquisition, demolition and enabling works on the Tesco site as well as the design and planning of a new state of the art community library and relevant connections.  This process has taken significant time, and I would like to thank all involved, especially the businesses and community for their patience throughout the process.”  

The Edenderry Regeneration funding announcement today gives an unprecedented opportunity to deliver a large-scale transformational project of a vacant derelict site in the town centre, led by Offaly County Council to allow Edenderry and its community to further develop and prosper. This significant investment is more important than ever to drive economic recovery and sustainable development into the future in Edenderry and the surrounding rural areas.

Concept Image of Edenderry Regeneration Project – new Community Library and Arts Space