Thursday, 11 July 2019

Questions (316)

Robert Troy


316. Deputy Robert Troy asked the Minister for Education and Skills when a new building will be completed for a school (details supplied); the reason for the delays; and the number of labourers and tradesmen working on site. [31452/19]

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Written answers (Question to Education)

As the Deputy is aware, the project to which he refers has been devolved to Westmeath County Council (WCC) for delivery.

The Deputy will recall from previous answers that the initial delays with the delivery of the project were due primarily to unforeseen ground and weather conditions. However, I can assure the Deputy that I consider that the delays with this project that have arisen in recent months are completely unacceptable for all concerned. In particular, I am very conscious that the school will have to continue to operate from unsatisfactory conditions with increasing enrolments until its new building is ready. 

The Deputy will also recall that a programme provided by the contractor which had indicated a completion date in July has recently been changed to provide for a completion date in October. Let me reiterate my extreme disappointment and frustrated with this development.

The contractor is responsbile for resourcing and programming the construction works in question. WCC, which is responsible for managing the contract, has expressed to the contractor directly its disappointment with the level of resources on site and the slow progress of the construction programme.

I am pleased to say that Westmeath County Council has reported to my officials that there has been a significant improvement in the activity on site in recent weeks. The project is well over 80% complete and, on that basis, I am hopeful that the project will be completed in October as is now planned.