Magee expansion must be ‘centrepiece commitment’ during new Assembly period

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The expansion of Magee must be a “centrepiece commitment” for the new Assembly because, after Brexit, Derry will have to be even more self-reliant in terms of expertise, skills and knowledge.

That’s according to The University for Derry (U4D) group, which is urging all political parties, to weigh-in behind a new and improved Magee College campus.

“The expansion of Magee to a full sized university campus remains essential for the health of the economy in Derry and the North West,” said U4D chair Padraig Canavan.

“The need for us to grow skills here has become even more important because of the Brexit vote, which means that we must become more self-reliant in terms of expertise, skills and knowledge.

“U4D has stressed to the main political parties and their local representatives the need for Magee’s expansion in line with the business plan that has been submitted to government and that this must be a centrepiece commitment for the next Assembly period,” he added.

Mr. Canavan said the people of Derry clearly want an expanded university campus.

“We believe the business plan has widespread support across the local population and we appreciate the support given by parties locally, the Chamber of Commerce, Ulster University and especially its new Vice Chancellor Paddy Nixon and his team and the Derry and Strabane District Council,” he said.

The U4D chair said it would have a transformative effect on the local economy.

“Only the expansion of Magee will provide the impetus to Derry’s economy that is necessary to create the employment and wealth that is so desperately required by our city and its people.

“It is the key missing piece of economic infrastructure, for Derry, the North West, Northern Ireland and indeed the cross border region,” added Mr. Canavan.