Written answers

Tuesday, 12 October 2021

Department of Justice and Equality

National Development Plan

Photo of Bernard DurkanBernard Durkan (Kildare North, Fine Gael)
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414. To ask the Tánaiste and Minister for Justice and Equality the extent to which projects that fall within the aegis of her Department and are within the revised national development plan are at an advanced stage at present or are in course thereof; the extent to which preliminary work has taken place or on-site works are in hand or proposed; the expected delivery date of each; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [49258/21]

Photo of Heather HumphreysHeather Humphreys (Cavan-Monaghan, Fine Gael)
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The capital allocation for the Justice Vote Group encompasses An Garda Siochána, Courts, Prisons and Justice Votes. The capital expenditure ranges across a number of areas such as ICT, Transport investment and capital building and refurbishment works.

While much of this investment programme is ongoing, it will also encompass new projects over the period of the National Development Plan (NDP) which are at various stages of selection and preparation.

I am pleased to inform the Deputy that three large infrastructural projects provided for in the NDP are due for completion next year, with further information about these projects provided below:

1) Construction of a new forensic science laboratory

-This project will provide Forensic Science Ireland (FSI) with a new modern forensic laboratory in Backweston in Co. Kildare.

- The procurement process for a modern laboratory incorporating up to date standards commenced in mid-2019 and concluded in March 2020.

-Construction commenced in March 2020 and this project is due for completion in Q3 2022.

2) Redevelopment of Limerick Prison

-This is a project to redevelop and modernise Limerick Prison to include new male accommodation block, female accommodation units together with related rehabilitation and support facilities.

-The Construction Contract was awarded in February 2019 and the project has been progressed well since then except for the issues arising from COVID-19 lockdowns.

-Estimated completion is now Q2 2022 with commissioning of various security/control systems to follow. The estimated delivery date is within Q2/Q3 2022.

3) Construction of a new Garda Control and Operations Centre

- This is a large capital development for An Garda Síochána at Military Road Dublin 8 (replacement for the Harcourt Square facilities).

-Construction commenced in March 2020 and estimated completion is in Q2/Q3 2022.

In addition to these projects, the capital investment will also allow for increased Investment in modernisation and reform programmes across the Justice sector including increased ICT expenditure in digital services, modernising service delivery, improving efficiency, reducing paper and providing data informed insights into policy development.

It will also provide for continuing investment in building and refurbishment projects across the Justice sector in new and refurbished Garda stations, court buildings and prisons. As the Deputy may be aware, construction of a purpose-built Family Law Court complex at Hammond Lane has now been set in train and this project will be delivered by way of PPP and as part of a Justice PPP bundle that will also see the delivery of 2 new Garda stations in Clonmel and Macroom. Allowing for procurement, which would be undertaken by the National Development Finance Agency, planning, and other activities, it is estimated that construction for this project will commence in mid-2023 with completion in late 2025/early 2026.

Provision is made too for continuing investment in the Garda Transport Fleet including the deployment of electrical vehicles where appropriate to ensure that An Garda Síochána has a modern, effective and fit for purpose fleet.

Finally, as the Deputy may be aware, the Courts Service Modernisation Programme is a ten-year initiative extending to 2030 and comprises four delivery phases. The first phase, “Mobilise”, which focused on setting up the requisite governance mechanisms, initial core-team assembly and awareness building, is now complete and the second phase, “Transition”, which spans 2021 and 2022, is underway.

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