The purpose of the tender competition to which the Deputy refers is to admit suitable construction firms into a Framework Agreement who can compete for potential future Irish Prison service capital projects. The new Framework Agreement will supersede the current one which is due to expire this year. It is not predicated on any particular prison design.
The establishment of the Framework Agreement does not create a commitment or contractual obligation on behalf of the Irish Prison Service with regard to any particular project.
As the Deputy will be aware, the Irish Prison Service has a large estate with many old buildings and an ongoing requirement for capital works.
Any future capital projects in excess of €5 million, if approved, may be tendered to the new Framework by way of a “Mini-Tender” competition in accordance with the terms of the Framework Agreement once it is in place.