The building where Leighlinbridge Garda Station used to be
A technical survey by the Office of Public Works on Leighlinbridge Garda Station to determine the works which would be required to enable the station to reopen have been finished, the Minister for Justice has confirmed.
Leighlinbridge station was closed back in January 2013 as part of a raft of cost cutting measures by the Government during the height of the recession.
In a written response - seen by Carlow Live - to a Parliamentary Question last month, the Minister said: "The Programme for a Partnership Government commits to a pilot scheme to reopen 6 Garda stations, both urban and rural, to determine possible positive impacts that such openings will have on criminal activity, with special emphasis on burglaries, theft and public order.
"The Garda Commissioner's final report on the matter, which is available on my Department's website, recommended that Donard Garda Station be reopened, along with stations in Ballinspittle, Co. Cork, Bawnboy, Co. Cavan, Leighlinbridge, Co. Carlow and Rush and Stepaside, Co. Dublin.
"I am informed by the Garda authorities that a brief of requirements was provided to the OPW in relation to the reopening of each of these 6 stations, including Donard Garda Station, and that the Garda authorities requested the OPW to undertake technical surveys to determine the works which would be required to enable the stations to reopen.
"I am further informed that the OPW has concluded these necessary technical surveys and reported to the Garda Commissioner. I understand An Garda Síochána and OPW remain engaged on progressing the matter.
"It is not possible to say at this stage when the six stations will reopen as this depends on a number of factors, but my officials are engaging on an ongoing basis with An Garda Síochána and the OPW as they progress these very important projects."
The Minister added: "The programme of replacement and refurbishment of Garda accommodation is progressed by the Garda authorities working in close cooperation with the Office of Public Works (OPW), which has responsibility for the provision and maintenance of Garda accommodation.
"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."