Dáil Éireann - Volume 649 - 04 March, 2008
Written Answers. - Prison Building Programme.
Deputy Michael D. Higgins Deputy Michael D. Higgins
Deputy Michael D. Higgins asked the Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform the position in regard to the proposed Thornton Hall Prison plan; the latest estimate available to his Department of the expected cost, including the cost of the site and the provision of  infrastructure and ancillary services; the cost of construction and fitting out of the prison; the costs incurred to date; the estimated date for the completion of the project; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [8970/08]
Deputy Charles Flanagan Deputy Charles Flanagan
Deputy Charles Flanagan asked the Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform the decisions that have been made to date in regard to the Thornton Hall prison complex; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [9043/08]
Deputy Brian Lenihan Deputy Brian Lenihan
Deputy Brian Lenihan: I propose to take Questions Nos. 120 and 172 together.
Negotiations are currently underway with a commercial consortium which was selected following an EU tender procedure for the design, construction, finance and maintenance of the proposed prison facilities at Thornton Hall, North County Dublin.
The project includes the construction of the prison facilities along with the ancillary infrastructure including services. The development procedure is set out in Part 4 of the Prisons Act, 2007. I am pleased to advise the House that the Notice of Development and Environmental Impact Assessment in respect of the project was published on Friday 29 February 2008. A copy of the Notice of Development has been lodged in the Oireachtas Library.
The publication of the Environmental Impact Assessment affords all interested parties an opportunity to make their views known and have them fully considered prior to a decision to proceed with the development. It is intended, subject to the statutory planning phase and the successful conclusion of the contract negotiations, to commence construction later this year. It is envisaged that the development will take approximately three years to complete.
Due to commercial and procurement reasons, it is not possible to provide details as to the likely costs of the construction and fit out costs. The disclosure of such information is not allowed under Department of Finance PPP guidelines.
I can, however, confirm the following expenditure which has taken place to date on the project. The cost of the site acquisition was €29,900,000. An additional 8.7 acres has also been acquired to provide a dedicated access road to the main site. This was done following representations from the local community which reflected concern in relation to the effect of increased traffic generated by the prison project. In addition to allaying these concerns, the new roadway will provide significant additional benefits both during the construction and operational phases of the project. The cost of this additional land was €1,305,000.
A total of €5,634,367 has been expended to date on preliminary site works including surveys, landscaping, security and maintenance of the property, archaeological and topographical, etc., and professional fees including legal and specialist technical advice.
Expenditure to date on the project has amounted to a total of €36,839,367, including site acquisition costs.
Question No. 121 answered with Question No. 119.
Dáil Éireann 649 Written Answers. Prison Building Programme.