Mr Alan Kelly, T.D., Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government has today, 1stFebruary, 2016, announced details of a new fire station for Cashel, Co. Tipperary as part of an overall €40m programme of construction/refurbishment of 26 fire stations for the five year period 2016 – 2020. The programme will see 16 new fire station construction projects initiated between now and 2020, along with 10 fire station upgrades/refurbishments.
The current station in Cashel, which is located on Ladyswell Street, is now considered no longer fit for purpose on a number of grounds including location and accessibility of current site, the age and condition of the building and lack of training facilities. However, Tipperary County Council have identified a more suitable location at Wallers Lot, Cashel for the proposed construction of a new 3 Bay Fire Station with appropriate ancillary accommodation and associated training yard with a drill tower.
This project is in addition to the Ministers approval last year to progress a new fire station at Templemore, Co. Tipperary.
Outlining the details, the Minister said, “My Department will provide just under €20 million in grant aid for these fire station projects. I am pleased to approve 16 new priority projects for Tuam, Kanturk, Virginia, Macroom, Cashel, Loughrea, Clonakilty, New Ross, Ballyjamesduff, Manorhamilton, Kilmacthomas, Castleblayney, Urlingford, Nobber, Crossmolina and Dunleer.”
The Minister added, “Subject to final agreement on scope and design these will be brought to tender and construction stage, on a phased basis, in the period up to the end of 2020. These projects are in addition to my approval last year to progress three new fire stations in Templemore, Co. Tipperary; Ferbane, Co. Offaly and Graiguenamanagh, Co. Kilkenny.”
The Minister also gave details of 10 stations which will be upgraded in the same period to 2020. “10 further stations will be upgraded under this programme, including Killarney, Ballinasloe, Dunshaughlin, Muine Bheag (Bagenalstown), Mountmellick, Mountrath, Ballinamore, Drumshanbo, Oldcastle and Kilkee.”
Details of all Fire Station projects are set out in Schedule 1.
The Minister confirmed that fire station construction projects will continue to be reviewed annually. This programme is in addition to the Minister’s recent approval of 20 new fire appliances for 16 fire authorities under a 2015 joint procurement programme. This programme will take three years to complete at an estimated total cost of c. €8 million.
The Department’s Fire Service Capital Programme also supports restructuring of the C Trí Project infrastructure (formerly known as Computer Aided Mobilisation Project (CAMP) II). Currently there are three CAMP Regional Communication Centres; Munster Regional, West Region and East Region, which will be transitioned into a single national system at the same centres offering significantly enhanced resilience as well as better value-for-money.
Minister Kelly reinforced the Government’s support of the fire services, stating, “My Department’s Fire Services Capital Programme supports the local fire authorities in the development and maintenance of a quality fire fighting and rescue service. This programme underlines and highlights this Government’s continuing commitment to the fire service.”