Phase 2 of Sport Ireland’s NIA project gets underway

The Republic of Ireland’s Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport, Shane Ross TD, has confirmed this month the commencement of Phase Two of the Sport Ireland National Indoor Arena (NIA) project on the National Sports Campus in Dublin, which is now underway.


The second phase will provide permanent indoor facilities for Ireland’s three leading field sports: Gaelic Games (GAA), Football/Soccer (FAI) and Rugby (IRFU). These will be used by all of the Ireland international Men’s and Women’s teams. Ancillary facilities, including changing and player rooms, offices and meeting rooms, will also be delivered as part of this phase in the development.


The total cost of construction of the Phase Two element of the Sport Ireland National Indoor Arena contract will cost approximately €24m and will add to the first phase of the contract, which was opened earlier this year. Completion of Phase 2 of the contract for the development of the National Indoor Arena will be a landmark moment for Irish sport.


The location of the Sport Ireland National Indoor Arena has been designed to allow easy access to the rugby, Gaelic games and soccer facilities within the National Sports Campus Master Plan – the existing FAI National Training Centre and GAA National Games Development Centre, and the proposed IRFU pitch facilities.


Speaking about the commencement of Phase Two, Chairman of Sport Ireland, Kieran Mulvey, said:

On behalf of Sport Ireland I welcome the commencement of the development of Phase Two of the Sport Ireland National Indoor Arena. The Arena has long been seen as one of the key missing pieces of the Irish sporting infrastructure, and while the development of Phase One has already had a hugely positive impact, the construction of Phase Two will cement the Sport Ireland National Sports Campus as Ireland’s foremost sporting hub.


The covered facility will allow Ireland’s top athletes in the relevant codes to train all year round, regardless of weather conditions, in preparation for competitive fixtures and international tournaments. At the same time the facility will provide a consistent environment for the provision of improved referee and coach development and training.


Mr Mulvey continued:

The development of Phase Two means that Ireland’s three leading field sports will have access to extensive indoor and outdoor facilities along with the world-class facilities of the Sport Ireland Institute in one location, delivering a significant improvement on training facilities elsewhere. I look forward to the completion of Phase Two in 2019 as Irish sport moves onto an exciting new chapter.


Minister Ross said:

Since Phase One opened earlier this year, the Sport Ireland National Indoor Arena has had an extremely positive impact on sport in Ireland with a number of events of national and international significance having already taken place.


Ireland has a strong international track record in rugby and football, while the GAA continues to provide opportunities to so many around the country. The addition of these indoor facilities to our sporting infrastructure will greatly benefit all three sports from grassroots right up to high performance level. I look forward to the commencement of work in the coming weeks.


Minister of State for Tourism and Sport, Brendan Griffin TD, added:

Since the opening of Phase One of the Sport Ireland National Indoor Arena earlier this year, the venue has seen significant footfall with the facilities benefiting many from elite athletes right down to grassroots clubs. The commencement of Phase Two is a significant development for the Irish sporting landscape with the world-class facilities set to further benefit our elite athletes and teams, as well as providing more opportunities for people of all levels to engage in sport.


Construction of Phase Two is expected to take two years to complete.



IRFU, GAA and FAI welcome announcement

The Irish Rugby Football Union (IRFU) have welcomed Minister Ross’ confirmation of the commencement of the development of Phase Two of the Sport Ireland National Indoor Arena on the National Sports Campus, not least as this will see the development of a rugby-specific high performance facility with a high performance gym and training facility, a covered half-pitch training facility and the construction of three full-sized outdoor rugby pitches.

The timing of the project, which is due to be completed by 2019, will further support Ireland’s bid to host the Rugby World Cup in 2023, and ensure the best possible preparation for Ireland’s senior Men and Women’s XVs, Women’s and Men’s Sevens sides and all underage teams as they continue to represent Ireland on the international sporting stage.


The announcement of the commencement of Phase Two of the National Indoor Arena project is of huge significance to our games. It is recognised that year-on-year teams competing against the best in the world must improve performance, and this project will allow all those who work at developing Ireland’s top athletes to come together in a centre of excellence, which can foster shared learning and development of Ireland’s elite athletes across all codes. It will be a significant leap forward for rugby, as, for the first time in our history we will have a central training base for all of our teams, who will benefit from world-class facilities. We know from experience that improvements and investment off the pitch result in improvements and performance on the pitch and we congratulate and thank Minister Shane Ross TD, the Government and Sport Ireland for their support.

Páraic Duffy, the GAA’s Ard Stiúrthóir, commented:

The first-class GAA facilities located at the Sport Ireland National Sports Campus have been a wonderful addition to the opportunities to grow and develop Gaelic games.


Since opening last year, our National Games Development Centre in Abbotstown has been a hive of activity at club, school and county level. The GAA warmly welcomes the news about the commencement of Phase Two of the Sport Ireland National Indoor Arena and the exciting development that will feature the construction of an indoor synthetic pitch capable of accommodating Gaelic games.


CEO of the FAI, John Delaney, added:

I welcome the announcement by Minister of Transport, Tourism and Sport, Shane Ross, around the commencement of the next phase of the Sport Ireland National Indoor Arena, which will include an indoor pitch for football.


The National Indoor Arena is a terrific sporting hub and with the development of a pitch it will facilitate with the preparation of our elite football players and will give access for the participation of grassroots players in a world class facility.


This announcement demonstrates the ongoing partnership and positive working relationship between the FAI, Sport Ireland and Government.



Images from the official opening of the Sport Ireland National Indoor Arena. Courtesy: KSS


Phase 1 in the Sport Ireland National Indoor Arena project


The Sport Ireland National Indoor Arena opened back in January 2017, with Sports Venue Business’ CEO, Katie McIntyre, on hand at the official opening ceremony. (Check out the video detailing the event and the facility online by simply clicking here.)


KSS Director Nick Marshall and Architect Tobin McCloy attended alongside representatives from Heron Buckingham Joint Venture (HBJV), Mott Macdonald, JV Tierney, Park Hood and a host of Irish athletes.


The state-of-the-art Sport Ireland National Indoor Arena is the new flagship facility at the Sport Ireland National Sports Campus (NSC). The multi-sport and multi-purpose arena is the newest of its kind in Europe, and has been designed to the highest standards and specifications ensuring Ireland has one of the best facilities for indoor sport events in the world.


The building can hold a range of events from junior and club level, through to regional and international sports events, whilst also catering for concerts, equestrian, exhibitions and conferences.


KSS led the design team for the Sport Ireland National Indoor Arena, completing detailed planning of all internal spaces, sporting facilities and technical design.


Nick said after the official opening ceremony:

I’m immensely proud of what KSS have achieved here at the National Indoor Arena.  We were challenged with creating an inclusive facility to transform sports training in Ireland at all levels of competition and, after seeing it in use today, I fully believe that we and our contractor partners, HBJV, have delivered that goal.


John Treacy, Chief Executive of Sport Ireland said:

We now have a world-class arena that caters for over 20 sports. We’ll be the envy of a lot of countries.


David Conway, then Director of the National Sports Campus, (now CEO of Limerick 2030), said:

This is a great day for the National Sports Campus with the completion of the National Indoor Arena. I would like to thank all the National Governing Bodies (NGB) of Sport that gave their technical assistance in completing this truly world-class sporting facility build and design by HBJV and KSS. The NGB’s now have a world-class facility to host and showcase their sports both nationally and internationally.


The new facility will drive the development of Irish sport for young aspiring athletes to fulfil their sporting potential acting as the missing piece in the sporting infrastructure of the nation.

For further information on KSS – a proud sponsor of Sports Venue Business (SVB) – check out their SVB Directory listing online at:

#SportsVenueBusiness – keeping you in the know!

Share This Article

This website uses cookies and asks your personal data to enhance your browsing experience.