Fáilte Ireland is to invest €6.6m in a new state-of-the-art museum. to be located at the Spanish Arch in Galway city.
The Galway City Museum, located at the historic Spanish Arch, will be redeveloped and rebranded as the Atlantic Museum Galway.
The announcement is the single biggest investment to date in a visitor attraction by the national tourism development authority.
According to Fáilte Ireland’s Head of Attractions Mary Stack, the investment will “transform the Spanish Arch district of Galway city and is expected to generate €29.3m in revenue for the region in its first five years of opening.”
The new three-storey interactive museum will be created at Comerford House, next to the current Galway City Museum, which stands on the left bank of the River Corrib. It will highlight the influence the Atlantic has had on the people, cultures and traditions of the once known ‘Merchant City’. Through cutting-edge technology, visitors will have the opportunity to immerse themselves in the history of the merchant tribes, Claddagh Basin and Spanish Armada.
Central to the new tourist attraction will be a viewing point at the top of the Spanish Arch to allow visitors to take in the vista of Galway Bay, the Claddagh and the River Corrib.
The square between the Spanish Arch and the existing museum will be remodelled into a new public space that will bring all elements of the attraction together.
Minister of State for Tourism and Sport, Brendan Griffin T.D., said: “The Government is proud to support innovation in tourism and I commend Fáilte Ireland for its vision and investment in this significant project to create the new Atlantic Museum Galway. Without funding such as this, tourism would not be the major industry that it is today – one that employs 260,000 people and sustains communities nationwide.”
Fáilte Ireland’s Head of Attractions, Mary Stack, added: “It is just one of 47 large capital projects Fáilte Ireland is supporting across the country. Tourism is a highly competitive business and with attractions like this, Ireland will continue to stand out in the international marketplace.”
The Fáilte Ireland investment of €6.64m in the Atlantic Museum Galway comes under its Grants Scheme for Large Tourism Projects 2016-2020. The total project cost, including funding from Galway City Council, will be €10.2m.