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"Apple in or lights out": Hundreds turn out for pro-Apple rally in Galway

An €850 million data centre is planned for Athenry.

A RALLY IN support of a planned €850 million Apple data centre has been held in Athenry, Co Galway.

An Bord Pleanála granted permission for the 24,500 square metre installation in August but objections by three individuals have brought the issue to the High Court.

Apple will tomorrow ask the High Court to fast-track a judicial review of the planning decision.

PastedImage-64915 Signs for today's event. Source: Facebook

Today’s rally was held in support of Apple’s plans with the locals present arguing that the single-storey data centre will bring investment to the area.

“We want to show Apple, and the whole world, that the vast majority of Athenry people support wholeheartedly Apple’s desire to open a data centre near our town,” a Facebook group for the event said ahead of today’s rally.

The event was organised by the newly formed ‘Athenry for Apple’ group. Minister of State for Gaeltacht Affairs and Natural Resources Seán Kyne was among those to speak at today’s event.

A smaller group of protesters who are against the plans were also present at the rally.

The data centre is to be built on a Coillte-owned greenfield site at Derrydonnell. The site is alongside the local Athenry Golf Club and the grounds of Lisheenkyle National School.

As well as the construction of the facility, a car park for 207 vehicles and an access road is also planned. An electricity substation will also to be built to accommodate 18 standby diesel generators.

Objections to the planned data centre argue that the facility could cause pollution and that inadequate consideration has been given to the ecology of the area.

Read: An Bord Pleanála approves Apple’s €850 million Galway data centre >

Read: What would you use the pedestrianised College Green plaza for? >

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Rónán Duffy

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