Dan Hughes, David McCormack, Keith Kinchella, Gerard O’ Malley, Liam Scott, Cathnia Ó Muircheartaigh, Mark Thompson, Cllr Peter Cleere, Eileen Curtis, Cathy McSorley, Laura Alcubilla, Triona Delaney
A design team has been appointed to lead the development of a new campus for two secondary schools in the western environs of Kilkenny City.
The development will include two schools. One is a second-level, multi-denomination co-ed school for 500 students to cater for the growing demand for school places in the city. The other is a Gaelcholáiste for 400 students, to cater for the needs of the increasing number of families who wish to have their children educated through Irish.
On completion, the campus will provide two modern state-of-the-art buildings offering the very best environment for high quality teaching and learning. The schools will offer a wide range of subject options, catering for all students’ interests and abilities, respecting the cultural and religious backgrounds of all families, and educating their children together in a caring atmosphere that encourages them to reach their full potential.
The project, led by the Education and Training Board (ETB), will see an investment of around €35 million locally, and the provision of education facilities which will serve the needs of the city and its environs in the years ahead.
The design team will be led by Mark Thompson of Thompsons Architects and Designers, Limerick, who have extensive experience in school buildings and will also include local civil and structural engineers from Hayes Higgins and Partners, Tom McNamara and Partners, quantity surveyors, Semple and McKillop Ltd, mechanical and electrical engineers, and ORS who will act in the role of project supervisor (PSDP).
According to KCETB Chief Executive Eileen Curtis, getting the project to this current juncture has involved extensive negotiations with the Department of Education and Skills, in which the ETB sought new, modern, fit-for-purpose facilities to cater for its growing student population in the city.
“Due to increasing numbers the situation in our current ETB school facilities on New Street and on Ormonde Road was unsustainable and could no longer provide for existing and future student needs,” said Ms Curtis.
The campus development represents a positive collaboration with the Trustees of St Kieran’s College and the president, Rev Dr Dermot Ryan. Through this, and the Department of Education and Skills, the ETB has been facilitated with a new larger site to accommodate its two new schools. The work of Kilkenny County Council on the western environs has also been crucial to the advancement of the project.
The partnership of the Education and Training Board with all the local parties, together with the work of the Department, has enabled the flagship project for the city to progress.