Limerick Institute of Technology has announced plans to open a campus in Ennis, Co Clare which will accept students on a number of courses from September.

It is aimed at substantially increasing third-level activity in the town, with an estimate of 150 students from start up.

Located at Bindon street in Ennis, the new campus comes as a result of a partnership between LIT and Clare County Council, who are making a capital investment of €750,000 towards the project.

LIT already has a campus presence in Clonmel and Thurles in Co Tipperary, at Moylish and at Clare Street in Limerick city where the Limerick College of Art and Design  is based.

A new engineering campus is currently being built at Coonagh, on the Limerick/Clare border.

Degree programmes in social care, early childhood care and education, and marketing and management will be available through in Ennis the CAO from this September.

There are also possibilities for evening and professional courses.

LIT President Vincent Cunnane said this new facility allows them to broaden their offering and adds to the educational options available to people locally, while at the same time enabling LIT to respond to the needs of business and industry in Clare.

"The reality is that the new campus will act as an economic generator, retaining people in Clare and potentially adding value to business and industry by providing additional high quality education options locally.

"Studies show that for every euro invested in an Institute of Technology, four euro will be generated in the local economy," he said.

"It also improves the experience of students in Ennis blending campus based college life with town centre living," he added.

The Mayor of Ennis, Clare Colleran Molloy, and the Mayor of Clare, Michael Begley, have said the move "heralds a new era for the town, providing it with a real foothold in third level education".