Léim ar aghaidh chuig an bpríomhábhar

Dáil Éireann díospóireacht -
Tuesday, 24 Feb 1998

Vol. 487 No. 6

Written Answers - Schools Refurbishment.

Desmond J. O'Malley


333 Mr. O'Malley asked the Minister for Education and Science when the rebuilding of eight classrooms, which were completely destroyed by fire on the 5 February 1997, at Crescent Comprehensive College, Dooradoyle, Limerick, will commence; the reason for the delay in the replacement of these classrooms which is causing great inconvenience in the school; if his attention has been drawn to the fact that the costs of rebuilding have increased significantly due to the delay in starting the work; the reason his Department carries its own insurance on buildings of this kind, rather than normal insurance through a company in view of the fact that this arrangement leads to excessive delays and increases in costs; and the reason the building work was not done simultaneously with the construction of a new library and other work at the school which is now almost completed. [4669/98]

Michael Noonan


338 Mr. Noonan asked the Minister for Education and Science when a contract will be placed for the replacement of accommodation at Crescent Comprehensive College which was destroyed by fire over 12 months ago; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [4828/98]

I propose to take Questions Nos. 33 and 338 together.

The State carries its own insurable risks and does not insure against such risks as a matter of general policy. These arrangements have been extended to community and comprehensive schools who are relieved of the onus and cost of effecting insurance cover. These arrangements are from time to time to ensure that the most cost effective insurance arrangements apply in the sector.

I do not accept that this has caused undue delay or increased costs in respect of this school or generally. My Department has acted swiftly and taken a number of steps to rectify the damage caused by fire at Crescent College Comprehensive School, Dooradoyle, Limerick.

A senior architect from the planning and building unit of my Department visited the school the day after the fire, consultants were employed and immediate approval was given for the clearance of the fire damaged area and necessary safety works.

Prefabricated accommodation was put in place. The renovation of home economics rooms and remedial internal works took place during the course of last year.

The library project which is currently under construction at Crescent College Comprehensive was at an advanced stage of architectural planning at the time the fire occurred and it was considered more appropriate to allow it to proceed to construction and to deal with the works arising as a result of the fire as separate projects.

The board of management of the school was involved in all decisions made in relation to works at the school.

The provision of the replacement accommodation requires a very substantial degree of technical and professional input in order to complete the architectural planning process which is currently at Stage 3, that is developed sketch scheme, of my Department's design team procedures.
It is intended that this project will progress speedily through the architectural design process and proceed to tender and construction as soon as possible.