6 December 2023
By David Lynch
Munster Rugby are delighted with today’s announcement of an additional Large Scale Sports Infrastructure Grant allocation of €1.2m for the Cork Centre of Excellence at Musgrave Park.
This brings the total LSSIF funding for the project to €2.7m and we would like to thank all Government departments involved and all local political representatives for their assistance in securing this grant.
Cork City Council recently approved an updated planning application for the Centre of Excellence so the tender process will now get underway with an aim for the new facility to be completed by the end of 2024.
The Cork Centre of Excellence will be built primarily for Munster Rugby’s underage sides and the surrounding community with local clubs, schools and community groups set to benefit.
The new indoor training facility will be located at the Pearse Road end of the stadium and will include a synthetic all-weather playing surface, a gymnasium, dressing rooms, treatment rooms, offices, a kitchen and public toilets.
The all-weather playing surface will be 50 by 40 metres and the gymnasium will be 2,400 square feet. The plans also include offices on the second floor, a new single-storey ticketing booth and increased parking for both cars and buses.
The facilities are at the centre of Munster’s strategy for growing the game in the province and engaging with the local community and will complete phase three of Musgrave Park’s development.
Two major redevelopments have taken place at the venue in recent years. A €3.2m investment by Munster Rugby saw major redevelopment work take place eight years ago. A new 3,500-seater West Stand was constructed and the East Terrace was covered.
In 2018, a new modified 3G pitch surface was installed. The state-of-the-art pitch has allowed for a significant increase in games played across a number of sports and disciplines at the venue.
Along with a huge increase in the number of grassroots rugby games played on the pitch, a diverse range of activities are also taking place in the multi-purpose venue, from frisbee tournaments to yoga classes.
The economic benefit of Musgrave Park for the surrounding area has grown exponentially in recent years. The surface has paved the way for the stadium to become one of the country’s top music venues with Take That among the star acts to perform at the venue next summer.