Following the recent signing of contracts, Mayo County Council has confirmed that construction of the Mary Robinson Centre in Ballina will commence on December 5th. The project entails the conservation and refurbishment of the original Robinson family home with a contemporary new build extension. The project is located on Emmet Street looking over the world-famous river Moy to St. Muredach’s Cathedral on the opposite bank.
When completed the centre will include a museum, archive, research and educational facility, and events venue. The contract, which Mayo County Council signed with LPB Construction Services, to the value of €3.10 million is expected to be completed in 2021.
Welcoming the progress on the project, Council Chief Executive Peter Hynes outlined that the introduction of the nation’s first Presidential Library is “great for County Mayo” adding that the project will “honour the legacy of our country’s first female President and inspire future generations to realise their potential.”
Mary Robinson is world-renowned for her contribution to discourse on human rights, gender equality and climate change. This initiative sees Mayo County Council partner with NUI Galway to provide the public with access to her prodigious archive as well as to papers arising from her ongoing work, which she has gifted to the museum.
Mayo County Council Cathaoirleach, Cllr Brendan Mulroy remarked that the centre will be a “fantastic resource for researchers and visitors alike” saying that it will “greatly benefit the local area and provide a boost to the tourism economy of Ballina and the North Mayo region, another emerging jewel in the Mayo Crown”.
The establishment of the Mary Robinson Centre will compliment and reinforce the town’s existing cultural suite of civic projects, including the Jackie Clarke Centre, The Ballina Theatre and Arts Centre, and the soon-to-be-realised Ballina Military Barracks Quarter.