FROM January 2018 to May of this year, the Office of Public Works (OPW) has spent more than €350,000 on the maintenance and repair of 12 garda stations in Co Laois.
Almost two-thirds of the funding – €213,689.51 – went to Portlaoise Garda Station. Part of that sum is being spent on preparatory works for the planned refurbishment of the station, which Chief Superintendent John Scanlan informed a recent meeting of the Laois Joint Policing Committee (JPC) that he expects the works to be finished by 2023.
The works include the construction of a three-storey office block on the army site at the rear of the old station and the demolition, rebuilding and major refurbishment on part of the old building, which is a protected structure. Chief Supt Scanlan said that the works are due to begin next year.
While preparatory work continues at Portlaoise, funding has also been provided for maintenance, emergency lighting and general repairs.
Surveys have also been carried out on garda stations in Abbeyleix, Arles and Ballylinan for the presence of asbestos.
Junior minister with responsibility for the OPW Kevin ‘Boxer’ Moran provided the information to deputy Seán Fleming when he asked how much has been spent on the garda stations since 2018.
Minister Moran said that €352,416.91 has been provided over that period.
He added that the planned refurbishment of Portlaoise Garda Station is currently at design stage.
Minister Moran revealed that Durrow Garda Station has or will receive €3,327.53 for general maintenance and repair of its roof. Mountmellick Garda Station will get €10,713.53 for general maintenance works, the installation of power points and the replacement of doors. A total of €1,612.21 has gone to Rathdowney Garda Station for general maintenance. Stradbally Garda Station received €18,900.92 for interior and exterior maintenance work, shower repair and the replacement of a door.
Borris-in-Ossory Garda Station, €80,324.77 for general maintenance, dry-lining, plastering, wiring, flooring and for shower/toilet facilities. Ballylinan Garda Station, €676.50 for an asbestos survey.
Work on Portlaoise station will include a ramp, the removal of raised beds, temporary accommodation, tree pruning, consultancy and ground works.
Arles Garda Station has been allocated €676.50 for an asbestos survey; Mountrath Garda Station, €1,628.87 for general maintenance and the installation of data points; Abbeyleix Garda Station, €3,786.79 for general maintenance and an asbestos survey; Clonaslee Garda Station, €1,765.36 for maintenance work; and Portarlington Garda Station, €15,290.42 for general maintenance, replacement of broken lights, shower repairs and security gate repairs.