The GAA has officially opened its new National Games Development Centre (NGDC) at Abbotstown on the site of the National Sports Campus
Uachtarán Aogán Ó Fearghail and Ard Stiúrthóir Páraic Duffy, along with members of the GAA’s Management Committee, Central Council and County Committees, joined a number of invited guests to mark the occasion. The facility will come into use with immediate effect.
The recently completed project includes a total of five playing pitches – four of them full size and all of them floodlit – a 3G pitch, a hurling wall and a pavilion which houses 10 dressing-rooms, a reception area and gymnasium, and associated facilities for physiotherapy, referees, meeting rooms and dining facilities.
A covered seated spectator area adjoining the pavilion can cater for 400 people.
The Centre will seek to increase participation and to improve the performance of individuals (players, coaches, administrators, personnel etc.) within the GAA for the benefit of both the Association and the individuals.
The primary focus will be on delivering Games Development activities but the centre will also be used to deliver inputs in areas such as Child Protection Health & Well-Being; Officer Development.
In all €12m has been invested in the 25 acre facility which is situated adjacent to the National Aquatic Centre and close to the main entrance of the campus.
Uachtarán Chumann Lúthchleas Gael Aogán Ó Fearghail said: “It gives us great pleasure to unveil this fantastic new facility and it is right and proper that the GAA and our native games have a presence in a prime location within the National Sports Campus.
“The facilities on offer to the wider GAA family here rank alongside the best anywhere and great credit is due to all who have been involved from the inception of the project right through to its delivery.
“The real benefits of this development will come to be seen in the months and years ahead as the Centre caters for teams of all types fostering a sharing of best practice that will enhance our games and the experience of those who play and coach them.”
Ard Stiúrthóir Páraic Duffy added: “It’s impossible not to be impressed by the completed facility and we are hugely enthused by the enthusiastic response from our various units regarding its use.
“The GAA would like to acknowledge our partners in this project including SSA Architects, Prunty Contracts Ltd., S&K Carey Ltd., and Tobin Consulting Engineers. Together we have delivered a facility to be proud of and I have no doubt that the new Centre will serve the GAA well for many years to come in the all-important area of games development.”
The National Games Development Centre will cater for units across the countrywide and international GAA family from club to county, from second level schools to third level activity. It will also be used by the Ladies Gaelic Football and Camogie Associations and there has been a full take up of slots for the first full month of operation.
Kieran Mulvey, Chairperson Sport Ireland commented: “This new Centre will be a fantastic facility and one which no doubt will be a great asset in the provision of a range of development programmes by the GAA and its affiliates.
“The National Sports Campus with all the ancillary services and facilities it provides, will no doubt prove the ideal location for training, coaching and development programmes to all levels in the Association”.