Cork County Council has secured a €35 million loan from the European Investment Bank to finance a strategic investment programme for the county over the next 20 years.

The loan agreement between Cork County Council and the European Investment Bank was signed by Council Chief Executive Tim Lucey and EIB Vice-President  Andrew McDowell.

Among the 52 projects to be funded will be the construction of relief roads for  Carrigaline and Bandon,  the Fermoy Weir project, as well as a new library for Kinsale, and tourisms projects such as Camden Fort and the re-development of the country's oldest famine house in Skibbereen.

The funding is part of an overall €50m loan facility approved by the EIB for the county, which is set to deliver 23% of the State's overall population growth over the next two decades.

Speaking at the contract signing at County Hall, Mr Lucey said the investment programme demonstrates the local authority's ambition as an organisation, and its intent.

He said the €35m loan will allow the local authority support strategic investment in its towns and villages and allow for balanced, sustainable growth across the county.

Mayor of County Cork, Councillor Christopher O'Sullivan, said traditional funding sources from Government departments and State agencies can be "intermittent and fragmented", which does not allow for an overall co-ordinated approach to major capital works.

This money, he said, will be allocated to priority schemes in the areas of sustainable transport, flood protection and community facilities.

"It will make a significant contribution to sustainable growth and employment in the county", he added.