444. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the progress being made with the redevelopment and refurbishment of a Garda station (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [1143/19]


Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Charles Flanagan): There has been unprecedented investment in An Garda Síochána in recent years, in support of the Government’s commitment to ensure a strong and visible police presence throughout the country to maintain and strengthen community engagement, provide reassurance to citizens and deter crime. €1.76 billion has been allocated to the Garda Vote for 2019, representing an increase of over 6% over the initial allocation for 2018. Very significant capital investment is also being made in An Garda Síochána, including to address deficiencies in the Garda estate.
The Deputy will appreciate that the Office of Public Works (OPW) has responsibility for the provision and maintenance of Garda accommodation. The programme of replacement and refurbishment of Garda accommodation is progressed by the Garda authorities working in close cooperation with the OPW. This includes identifying and progressing any necessary remedial or refurbishment works required at individual stations. As Minister, I have no direct role in these matters.
I am advised by the Garda authorities that the refurbishment works at Fitzgibbon Street Garda Station will be carried out in two phases. The initial phase of enabling works commenced in September 2018. This phase is expected to be completed in April 2019.
The second phase of works will commence soon thereafter. It is currently anticipated that those works will take approximately twelve months to complete.