A £75 million investment in
CAFRE campuses will under-pin future sustainable growth of the Northern Ireland agri-food industry, Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs Minister Edwin Poots has said.
Both campuses at Loughry and Greenmount will undergo a
significant refurbishment program-me which will include new modern student accommodation and high-tech facilities to support student learning.
Announcing the refurbishment programme, Mr Poots said: “CAFRE has a well renowned reputation within the agri-food industry for providing excellent tuition and training facilities for the next generation of farmers, growers and agri-food personnel.
“I am delighted to announce a £75 million investment which will revolutionise the facilities at CAFRE and underpin future sustainable growth of the Northern Ireland agri-food industry.
“The buildings at the heart of Loughry and Greenmount campuses, where students live, study and socialise, were built over 50 years ago. It is therefore fitting that my department is making this investment in the Centenary year of Northern Ireland.
“This investment complements the
recent launch of the BSc (Hons) Degrees in Sustainable Agriculture and Horticulture and the Higher Level Apprenticeships in Food and will ensure that CAFRE remains at the forefront of agri-food education across these islands.
“The plans for Loughry will also include a Science Centre, which will be shared with food research staff in the Agri-Food and Biosciences Institute (AFBI). These top class facilities will be the centre of knowledge and innovation for the industry leaders and decision-makers of the future.
“CAFRE is well placed to deliver education, knowledge transfer and innovation programmes which will assist in the delivery of my Green Growth initiative. I also welcome the fact that the design and construction of the new buildings will be environmentally sustainable, enhancing the well-being of all who use, live and work in them.”
Welcoming the funding for
the campus investments, Martin McKendry, College Director, said: “Modern, well-designed facilities at Greenmount and Loughry campuses are strategically important for recruitment onto our wide portfolio of courses.
“Planning for these projects has already commenced and construction will begin in late 2022/early 2023.
“The building work will have a phased approach to minimise disruption to the delivery of our programmes and we have a target completion date of 2028,” he said.