Connacht Rugby gets planning permission for new stadium

Project will also include a new high-performance centre and a greyhound racing track

Connacht Rugby has been granted full planning permission for the €30 million redevelopment of the Sportsground in Co Galway.

The club said on Friday that the redevelopment on College Road is now “shovel ready”, although it will not be in a position to begin work on the project unless it receives €20 million in funding from the State.

Connacht Rugby has secured €10 million in private funding through a mixture of its own funds and an approved bank credit facility. It said the State investment of €20 million “is now critical to the delivery of the project”.

Connacht previously announced that after a three-year process the province had reached an agreement with their co-tenants, the Irish Greyhound Board, and the owners of the land, the Galway Agricultural and Sports Society, to develop the new stadium.


The project will also include a new high-performance centre and a new greyhound racing track.

The club said the project has been the subject of an independent economic appraisal by economist Dr Kevin Hannigan of KHSK Economic Consultants who found through a cost benefit analysis that the project will yield a net benefit of 53 per cent.

Connacht Rugby chief executive Willie Ruane said he was pleased that the project had received planning approval.

“There has been huge momentum behind the project since we announced last October, and we now have the final granting of planning permission,” he said.

“With 130 people employed throughout the province by Connacht Rugby we are extremely proud of the annual contribution of €34.4 million we are making to the regional economy.”

Colin Gleeson

Colin Gleeson

Colin Gleeson is an Irish Times reporter