Convent conversion now awaits funding
Wed 5 May 2004
By SYLVIA POWNALL
Following some delicate negotiations over access Nas Na Riogh Housing Association has secured full planning permission and is now awaiting a decision on funding from the Department of the Environment. In the meantime the not for profit group has been overwhelmed with the level of support from local businesses and organisations. Naas Golf Club held a golf classic recently and handed over the proceeds and the association expressed its gratitude to Lady Captain Gert Conway. In addition, Naas Lions Club has offered ongoing support for the project which will convert the upper storey of the convent into 16 apartments with a further 21 apartments in a new building next door.
“The application for funding has gone in to the department and everything is stalled until we get that,” said Margarita Solon, PRO for NNRHA. “It was a lengthy process to get everything else sorted out but we are very optimistic now.” She added: “We got unbelievable support from the local community at our fundraiser in December. We also have the full support of every member of Naas Town Council.” The 37 units will accommodate up to 70 people but the beauty of the project is that not only will the residents be living in the heart of the town, but there will also be a coffee shop and meeting rooms offering a social outlet for both residents and members of the public. “This is a ground-breaking idea for the support of the independence of our elders in the community,” said Margarita. “The wonderful thing is the facility will be open to all the community so it gives a great opportunity for integration. The residents will not feel isolated in any way.”