Up to 150 construction jobs are to be created by computer giant Hewlett Packard during the building of a new facility for the company in Galway.

The Ballybrit building will house its software research and development, cloud technology and business services.

The company's 650 staff in Galway will transfer from their existing building in the city to the new 87,000 sq foot facility, which will have a capacity for up to 700 employees.

The announcement was made in Galway this morning by John Hinshaw, HP's executive vice president of Global Technology and Operation at the company.

The project is in the final stages of planning, and the company says when construction begins this year it will be one of the largest construction projects in the region.

Martin Murphy, HP's Managing Director for Ireland, said the announcement is an endorsement of Galway as a strategic location of choice for HP and affirms its ongoing commitment to its operations here.

HP currently employs around 4,500 people in Ireland, between its main campus in Leixlip, Co Kildare and its operations in Galway and Dublin. The company has expanded its presence here in recent years, through a series of expansions.