The loan, secured from the European Investment Bank will aid in facilitating the University’s plans of increasing student numbers of 25% in the next ten years. The University also shows plans to increase faculty numbers by 50%.
President of the EIB, Dr. Werner Hoyer visited UCD last week to officially establish the loan facility, where he described the sum as representing a “transformational investment.”
One of the key stipulations for UCD to be in receipt of the loan was that the project help in the further development of the knowledge economy in the EU.
The funds will be focused on the Belfield campus, of which the significant projects are outlined in the University’s five year Strategy 2020-2024 plan, including the aforementioned increase in both student and faculty numbers, and the construction of several new facilities across campus.
Some of the construction and maintenance plans as laid out by the University are as follows:
The Centre for Creativity: a new structure that will sit at the main N11 entrance to UCD will house discussions across multiple disciplines throughout the University regarding engagement between UCD and its students. The building is reported to be costing the University €48 million, and will include a surrounding plaza and reflecting pool. The winning architectural bid design was secured by Steven Holl Architects, and takes inspiration from the Giant’s Causeway.
The refurbishment of the Newman building and James Joyce Library.
An extension to the O’Brien Centre for Science, and the refurbishment of the Physics and Mathematics, Earth Sciences and Biology wings.
Architecture will be relocated to join Engineering, and will be offering students studio spaces and creative teaching suites.
The Centre for Future Learning, which will not be exclusive to one college or faculty, but will be used by all students for individual, group and collaborative needs.
The plans for Belfield campus exceed €1 billion, with the approximately remaining two-thirds funding coming from loans, government grants and increased student numbers.