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    Reference: 20210091
    Release date: 8 March 2023

    Promoter – Financial Intermediary




    The project concerns the construction of a new 15,000m2 business school at University College Cork (UCC) in the centre of the city of Cork in southern Ireland. The project will support the consolidation of the business school departments into one site in modern facilities to enhance the teaching and learning environment.

    Additionality and Impact

    The project addresses a demography-driven investment gap with regard to the provision of places in higher education in Ireland. Public higher education has the nature of a public good for which the operator cannot capture sufficient financial benefits, justifying public intervention.

    The Project provides a modern state-of-the-art academic environment for students and staff in a key higher education institution in Ireland. The new building will provide space for the business school's expansion in light of a demography-driven increase in the number of domestic students, and supports the university's aim to be globally competitive and attract and increasing number of international students. 

    The building will be a highly energy performing building and includes climate adaptation measures.

    The financing proposed offers features such as revisable rates, longer grace periods and a long tenor that improve the affordability of the project.


    The Project contributes to the European Higher Education Area by providing modern facilities and additional space for quality teaching in a key higher education institution in Ireland. The Project is in line with the Irish Government's 'Project Ireland 2040'. The National Planning Framework prioritising balanced regional development outside of Dublin. Cork is one of Ireland's fastest growing regions and the development of the business school is expected to play a specific role in ensuring the region is attractive to business investment and provides access to quality higher education for the region's youth. The project is therefore eligible under Article 309 point (c) common interest (Innovation, Human Capital).


    Proposed EIB finance (Approximate amount)

    EUR 50 million

    Total cost (Approximate amount)

    EUR 130 million

    Environmental aspects

    Directive 2011/92/EU amended by Directive 2014/52/EU on Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) does not specifically cover higher education infrastructure, leaving it at the discretion of the responsible competent authorities to request an EIA on the basis of the location and scale of the works concerned. However, higher education infrastructure may fall under Annex II of the Directive with respect to urban development. The public buildings will be required to at least meet the energy efficiency targets as defined in Directive 2010/31/EU on the energy performance of buildings and Directive 2012/27/EU on energy efficiency. The project is expected to contribute to climate action and environmental sustainability (CA&ES) objectives, in particular to climate mitigation and climate adaptation. Social and environmental aspects as well as any aspects related to historical and cultural heritage will be verified during the appraisal.


    The Bank will require the promoter to ensure that contracts for implementation of the project will be tendered in accordance with the applicable EU procurement legislation, Directive 2014/24/EU as well as Directive 89/665/EEC as interpreted by the Court of Justice of the EU, with publication of tender notices in the EU Official Journal, as and where required.


    Signed - 20/12/2023

    Under appraisal
    17 April 2023
    20 December 2023


    Before financing approval by the Board of Directors, and before loan signature, projects are under appraisal and negotiation. The information and data provided on this page are therefore indicative.
    They are provided for transparency purposes only and cannot be considered to represent official EIB policy (see also the Explanatory notes).

    Related tags

    Ireland Education