Wednesday, 18 December 2019
Department of Public Expenditure and Reform
Garda Station Refurbishment
144. To ask the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform the reason the site preparations for renovation works at the Garda station, Athlone did not foresee the ESB requirements; if the new requirements will delay the project; if so, the expected timeframe; the new scheduled completion date; and if additional costs will be associated with the new works. [53666/19]
The Office of Public Works (OPW) is managing the delivery of the new redevelopment of Athlone Garda Station.
The Deputy should be aware that Athlone Garda Station had to remain operational during the construction period. To facilitate this, the construction project was spilt into three phases with an anticipated total construction period of 24 months which began in June 2018.
The discovery and diversion of this high voltage ESB cable has caused a significant delay but the exact duration will not be known until the cable diversion works are completed.
The OPW took all adequate steps to assess the site prior to construction stage. Prior to starting works on site, surveys of the site were carried out which did not reveal any significant risk with ESB cabling. The OPW also met with the ESB in 2010 and 2015 prior to the commencement of any construction works and this cable was not identified by the ESB as a concern.
Based on the information to date and the assumption that the diversion works will be completed in January 2020 ,the revised contractor’s programme estimates substantial completion in Q4 2020/Q1 2021.
The programme will continue to be closely reviewed and monitored by OPW so that delays are mitigated as much as possible. The OPW is working with the contractor to ensure delivery of a fully refurbished and extended Garda station, which will give Athlone and the Midlands fit-for purpose policing infrastructure to meet present and future demands.