WATERFORD Institute of Technology is to begin building a new integrated research facility in January.
Plans for the project were outlined yesterday by institute director Professor Kieran R Byrne, who was addressing graduates and members of faculty at the first of 12 conferring ceremonies this week.
The new centre at the West Campus in Carriganore, he said, would play a vital role in the further development of the south-east as a key ICT (information and communications technology) hub.
“It is specifically designed in anticipation of an extended research future for the institute,” he said.
“It will be linked to the current ArcLabs facility, which houses our unique Telecommunication and Software Systems Group (TSSG). This research group is the largest of its kind in Europe. It employs 140 people and has been instrumental in developing patents and establishing spin-out companies.”
According to Prof Byrne, the institute will specialise in the area of software systems and its impact will be of “enormous benefit” to the region.
“The engine for regional economic growth is fuelled by new knowledge and it is to this that our new integrated building will be dedicated,” he said.
The West Campus will also facilitate the building of a large sports arena where a number of different facilities will be brought on stream, the director said.
Already, three new playing fields have been laid out and put under floodlights, with changing rooms and pavilion facilities to begin construction next month.
Almost 2,500 graduates are being conferred with academic awards over three days at WIT’s College Street campus.
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