The long-awaited planning application for the new National Maternity Hospital to be built on the campus of St Vincent’s Hospital in Dublin was lodged today.
The application has been held up due to a row with St Vincent’s Healthcare group over the running of the new hospital.
However, an agreement was reached in November paving the way for the planning application to be lodged.
The current National Maternity Hospital is housed in a cramped and outdated building in Holles St Hospital.
The planning application has been made with An Bord Pleanala in a bid to speed up the process.
Health Minister Simon Harris said: “I am delighted to confirm that a planning application for the new National Maternity Hospital will be submitted to An Bord Pleanála today. I am passionate about improving the safety and quality of our maternity services.
"The lodgement of the planning application is a milestone in the development of the future infrastructure we want for our maternity services so today is a landmark day.
"The National Maternity Strategy is titled 'Creating a Better Future Together' and that is exactly what we are doing through this project. We are going to provide women with an appropriate environment where they can deliver their babies in safety, in comfort, and with their privacy respected."
The project constitutes the largest single investment ever to be made in maternity services in Ireland.
The new development will cater for up to 10,000 births per annum and will include state of the art obstetrics and gynaecology care facilities, including: Five Operating Theatres; 50 Neonatal Intensive Care and Special Care single cot rooms; 24 Delivery rooms; Emergency and Out-patient Departments; Ultrasound facilities; and single in-patient rooms throughout.