Written answers

Wednesday, 17 November 2010

Department of Justice, Equality and Law Reform

Prison Building Programme

9:00 pm

Photo of Ciarán LynchCiarán Lynch (Cork South Central, Labour)
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Question 62: To ask the Minister for Justice and Law Reform the progress on the Thornton Hall project; if he will confirm that no prisoners will be able to be accepted in Thornton Hall before 2014 at the earliest and the total amount spent on the project to date. [43002/10]

Photo of Dermot AhernDermot Ahern (Minister, Department of Justice, Equality and Law Reform; Louth, Fianna Fail)
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As the Deputy will be aware the development of the new prison campus at Thornton Hall, Kilsallaghan, County Dublin is now proceeding on a phased basis. Phase one, which is currently in progress, comprises essential preliminary works to facilitate the prison development including the construction of a dedicated access road, the installation of off-site services and the construction of the perimeter wall of the prison. The second phase of the project involves the provision of 400 cells along with related support facilities suitable to accommodate up to 700 prisoners. Subsequent phases of the project will see the provision of the balance of the 1,000 cells providing a total of 1,400 cells when completed with operational flexibility to accommodate up to 2,200 prisoners, thus future proofing the development.

Access Road

I am pleased to advise the Deputy that a contract for the construction of the access road to serve the prison development was awarded to SIAC Construction Limited in July 2010 and construction work is already well underway in relation to this phase of the project. The access road and underpass are scheduled to be completed during February next year.

Off-site Works

A procurement competition for the installation of the off-site services to serve the prison development issued to companies on the Irish Prison Service Construction Framework in August. The evaluation of the tenders by the Irish Prison Service and its technical advisors has been completed and the arrangements for the award of the contract to the successful tenderer is at an advanced stage. Subject to contract award, work on the installation of the off-site services is scheduled to commence next month and will take approximately eight months to complete.

Perimeter Security Wall

The procurement process for the design and construction of the perimeter security wall of the prison is already in progress. A pre-qualification competition for the design and construction of the perimeter security wall of the prison and related works issued on the E-tenders web site in August 2010. Twenty submissions were received and the evaluation of these submissions has been completed. Five companies have been short-listed and these contractors will be invited to tender for the construction of the perimeter security wall and ancillary works later this month. Construction of the perimeter wall is scheduled to commence in the first quarter of 2011 and will take just under a year to complete.

Prison Buildings

As I mentioned previously in the House, my priority is to provide good quality, regime focussed prison accommodation at Thornton Hall prison campus as quickly as possible. A phased development of the prison campus is now being pursued. The next phase of the works will see the procurement of prison accommodation blocks and related support facilities commencing in the New Year using traditional procurement methods.

In relation to expenditure on the project, the total expenditure to end October is €42.5 million. This sum includes the site cost of €31.2 million.

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