€40m is to be made available in European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) grant assistance to local authorities for designated gateway and hub towns across the country.

The EU scheme will enable investments in sustainable transport and urban regeneration measures in Irish urban centres for the period 2014-2020.

ERDF is providing €40m for the estimated €127m needed for the projects, which are co-funded by the local authorities.

Projects awarded funding are located in Cork, Dublin, Limerick, Waterford, Ennis, Kilkenny, Mallow, Tralee, Wexford, Athlone, Dundalk, Galway, Letterkenny, Mullingar, Sligo, and Tullamore.

The aim of the ERDF scheme is to improve the urban environment and revitalise Irish urban areas.

It makes capital funding available to tackle social, economic, environmental, climate and demographic challenges.

Commenting on the announcement, Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport Paschal Donohoe said: “I'm pleased to see, for example, that Limerick is continuing to seek to improve its sustainable transport provision under this scheme, following on from €9m granted to them under my Department's Smarter Travel Area funding stream.

“The commitment to funding urban regeneration also ties in neatly with my responsibilities for tourism as these funds will make these towns and cities more attractive not only to live and work in but to visit,” he added.