9. Deputy Tony McLoughlin asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the status of the development of the new regional Garda headquarters in County Sligo; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [11984/19]


Deputy Charles Flanagan: The Garda building and refurbishment programme 2016-2021 is an ambitious five-year programme based on agreed Garda priorities, which continues to benefit over 30 locations around the country, underpinned by significant Exchequer funding across the Garda and Office of Public Works Votes.  In addition to that programme, other major works to the Garda estate which are ongoing include the pilot Garda station reopening project, the development of a new facility at Military Road and the major refurbishment of Fitzgibbon Street station, both in Dublin.
I emphasise that the clear goal of this investment is to address deficiencies in the Garda estate and provide fit-for-purpose facilities for Garda members and staff, as well as the public interacting with them.  There has been some good progress in relation to the Garda estate in recent times, including in particular the completion and entry into operational use in 2018 of three new divisional and regional headquarters in Wexford, Galway and Kevin Street, Dublin, which collectively required funding of over €100 million.
In relation to Sligo, I can inform the Deputy that the public private partnership arrangement included in the building and refurbishment programme is intended to deliver new stations in Sligo, Macroom and Clonmel, as well as a new custody suite at the Garda station located on Anglesea Street in Cork city.
Site acquisition for this public private partnership bundle has been complex and has taken longer than originally envisaged.  I have been informed by the Office of Public Works and the Garda authorities that the Office of Public Works acquired sites for the development of the new stations in Macroom and Sligo in 2015 and 2018, respectively.  I am pleased to say that I am informed by the Office of Public Works that all difficulties in relation to completion of the acquisition of the site in Clonmel were recently resolved and that that transfer is now also agreed.  It was necessary to secure all three sites before the public private partnership could proceed to the next stage.
The development of public private partnership projects is progressed under the auspices of the National Development Finance Agency. My Department and the Garda authorities are working to progress this matter, with the input and assistance of the National Development Finance Agency.  My Department is also engaging with the Office of Public Works in relation to the assistance that it may be able to provide to the process, including direct engagement on the matter between the Secretary General of my Department and the Chair of the Office of Public Works.