GEORGIAN Limerick is to benefit from a new fund that will be used to restore and renovate history buildings in the city.
Limerick Civic Trust announced details of the Limerick Renaissance Fund, an evergreen revolving fund with a focus on urban regeneration.
The independent, non-profit making voluntary society established the fund to support the renaissance of derelict and under-used properties in the Newtown Pery area of Limerick through redevelopment for use as mixed commercial and residential.
“Limerick’s Georgian Quarter is an architectural gem and the biggest in Ireland outside Dublin but it needs an overarching plan in regards investment, preservation and restoration, enabling it to be repurposed and used for modern living and commercial activity,” said Limerick Civic Trust chief executive, David O’Brien.
“The potential of Georgian Limerick is well-documented, so are the hindrances. The Limerick Renaissance Fund will breathe new life into historic buildings, thereby securing their future but also bringing life back into the city centre and improving the attractiveness of the area as a destination – a Magnet City.”
The Limerick Renaissance Fund is aligned to and will support the Georgian Neighbourhood Limerick project which is being driven by the Urban Innovation Department of Limerick City and County Council.
Limerick Civic Trust will work closely with the local authority, government bodies and private property owners to identify suitable buildings for development.
“Through the Fund we will work with the owners of derelict and underused properties, some of whom may not have the resources to restore the buildings and find that developers are not offering them the necessary incentive. We can narrow the gap and offer a viable solution. Some owners would get a greater portion of the market value when the building is repurposed or sold and are reassured by working with a local heritage-focused body,” Mr O’Brien explained.
The Limerick Renaissance Fund will source derelict building projects from both national and regional public bodies and state agencies, private individuals, and in the case of abandonment, will claim title to properties under existing regulations.
Stating that the Georgian Neighbourhood is not just a place but a new way of living Council Architect Rosie Webb explained that people are waking up to the value inherent in these buildings, both in terms of heritage and of the possibilities they hold for the future.
“We welcome the launch of the Limerick Renaissance Fund, it is a much-needed incentive and will enhance and support the measures we have already put in place to help people renovate or refurbish a Georgian building,” she added.