An Taoiseach, Enda Kenny TD, officially opened the new Sport Ireland National Indoor Arena in Dublin today.
The state-of-the-art indoor training and events centre is situated at the heart of the Sport Ireland National Sports Campus and comprises a National Gymnastics Training Centre, National Indoor Athletics Training Centre and National Indoor Training Centre.
Speaking at the opening, An Taoiseach said: “I am delighted to officially open the Sport Ireland National Indoor Arena today. This most impressive facility is a very welcome addition to Ireland’s sporting infrastructure and I look forward to the many events which the Arena will host of the coming months and years. I would like to congratulate all involved with the development of this facility, and wish Sport Ireland the very best for the future.”
The construction of the Sport Ireland National Indoor Arena began in January 2015 and it is designed to accommodate over 20 sports which are complemented by ancillary spectator, changing, media and conference facilities.
Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport, Shane Ross TD, was in attendance at the opening, he said: “The development of the Indoor Arena with its tremendous indoor athletics track, world class Gymnastics Centre and expansive indoor training facilities fills an important gap in our national sporting infrastructure. The Sport Ireland National Sports Campus is providing access for an ever-wider range of sports and has truly grown to become the home of Irish sport. This new Arena will not only provide world class training facilities but will also present opportunities to attract major events to Ireland. I have no doubt that we will see many international events take place in this facility which, as well as enhancing our international sports reputation, will also contribute to the growth of our sports tourism industry, the fastest growing sector in tourism.”
The Sport Ireland National Indoor Arena is the latest addition to the Sport Ireland National Sports Campus with a large number of facilities already developed at the west Dublin site including: the National Aquatic Centre, Sport Ireland Institute and High Performance Centre, Irish Sport HQ, National Diving Centre, National Horse Sport Arena, National Cross Country Track and Special Olympics Ireland HQ among others.
Commenting on the developments at the Sport Ireland National Sports Campus, Minister O’Donovan said: “The Sport Ireland National Indoor Arena is a very welcome addition to the Sport Ireland National Sports Campus and cements the site as Ireland’s foremost sporting hub. The Campus has already played host to major international events from swimming to cross country and the development of the Arena is another important component if we are to continue to attract top sports people and spectators to Ireland. I am pleased that as well as a number of national competitions, in 2017 the Sport Ireland National Indoor Arena will co-host the FIBA Under 18 Women’s European Basketball Championship in August.”
The Arena will provide undoubted benefits to athletes of all ages and abilities as highlighted by Sport Ireland Chairman, Kieran Mulvey.“Sport Ireland is delighted to have reached the stage where we are opening the new Sport Ireland National Indoor Arena. The Arena will have an impact on athletes of all levels with the facilities catering for the Sport Ireland National Sports Campus participation programmes right through to our top athletes. I am delighted that the Campus has already secured bookings for a number of high profile events and I look forward to seeing many people come through the doors in the future.”
Sport Ireland Chief Executive, John Treacy, is looking forward to the opportunities that the new venue will open for Ireland’s National Governing Bodies for Sport: “With the Sport Ireland National Sports Arena being designed for over 20 sports it is a welcome boost for our National Governing Bodies for not only top level competition, but also their grassroots base. The impact of the arena will stretch beyond sport, with the Arena capable of hosting major conferences and concerts. Sport Ireland is very much looking forward to the exciting period ahead.”