Dublin restaurants granted funding to build city centre outdoor dining spaces

By Kim oLeary

Dublin restaurants located on Merrion Row, Suffolk Street and Capel Street in the city have been awarded funding to build outdoor spaces in preparation for the winter months.

A total of €9 million is being provided by Failte Ireland for restaurants across the country to build outdoor dining spaces over the next six months.

As the summer draws to a close, 38 locations will be developed under the scheme.

Fáilte Ireland’s Outdoor Dining Enhancement Scheme opened for applications in March 2021 and comprises two parts.

This week's announcement relates to Part Two of the Scheme.

The Dublin areas allocated funding for outdoor dining include:

People sit with their drinks at a table outside a re-opened pub in Dublin (Getty Images)

• Merrion Row, (€255,312)

• Suffolk St, (€351,786)

• Capel St (€742,095)

Each local authority can apply for €200,000 for up to two locations with some additional funding available in certain circumstances.

They are expected to go into use between October and next St Patrick’s Day.

A separate aspect of the scheme, offering relatively smaller grants to individual businesses for outdoor improvements, remains open for applications until the end of September.

Minister for Tourism, Arts, Culture, Sport, Gaeltacht and Media, Catherine Martin T.D and Paul Kelly CEO Fáilte Ireland were in Howth this week to make the official announcement.

Minister Catherine Martin said: “I am pleased to announce the locations of 38 new outdoor dining facilities to be developed around Ireland including here in Howth, in County Dublin.

"The aim of this Scheme is to support tourism and hospitality jobs and help businesses develop new ways of catering for domestic and international tourists outdoors.

"Access to outdoor dining facilities will continue to be a key part of industry recovery as we look forward to 2022 and beyond. This scheme further strengthens the Government’s deep commitment to develop tourism and necessary infrastructure nationwide.”

Paul Kelly CEO of Fáilte Ireland added: “This Scheme supports resilience and survival in the short term and the recovery of the tourism sector in the long-term. Outdoor dining and hospitality will now be a permanent feature of our hospitality offering and businesses need to be supported to facilitate this for longer periods throughout the year.

"We have already seen the success of the first part of this Scheme, which provides individual businesses up to €4,000 towards the cost of outdoor seating. This second part of the Scheme being announced today is implemented in partnership with Local Authorities and will build on strengthening the outdoor dining offering around Ireland.

"We have learned during COVID-19 that people want the option of dining outdoors; this scheme will make dining areas suitable in a wider range of weather conditions so that they can be used for longer periods of the year, helping businesses towards sustainable recovery.”

Meanwhile locations in South Dublin have been granted one-month extension and are awaiting approval.

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