Over €8.8 million in funding under the Connected Hubs Scheme will enable existing hubs and broadband connection points to enhance and add capacity to remote working infrastructure in every region across Ireland.
The scheme, which is a key part of the ‘Our Rural Future’ initiative, will also facilitate grants in funding measures to assist hubs to deal with COVID-related challenges.
Set to benefit 117 projects, the funding will support a wide range of relevant works nationwide, including the expansion of existing hubs, installation of privacy booths, access control and security systems. It will also assist with converting existing open plan space to modular offices, and provide enhanced audio visual, networking, and conferencing facilities.
The funding, recently announced by Minister for Rural and Community Development, Heather Humphreys TD, will be used to develop remote working infrastructure as follows:
- €2.8m in the Eastern and Midland Region
- €3m in the North-West Region
- €3m in the Southern Region
This investment package will support the ongoing development of the National Hub Network – connectedhubs.ie – which already has more than 100 hubs using the platform and 380 hubs mapped, since it went live.
Minister Humphreys said: “Our Rural Future recognises hubs as ideal locations for people to work remotely, as well as acting as key economic assets for towns and villages. The increased shift to remote working due to the pandemic has provided an opportunity for a greater regional distribution of jobs to support a better work life balance for many people.”