PLANS have been approved for funding to build a new Garda Station in Castletroy, with the Office of Public Works (OPW) already set to work on locating an ideal site.
It is understood that Garda Commissioner Drew Harris this week approved funding for the proposed Castletroy Garda Station, which was included in the An Garda Síochána Capital Plan for 2025 to 2030.
The possibility of a Garda station in Castletroy has been the subject of much controversy in recent weeks, with both local force members and elected representatives rowing in on both sides of the debate.
Now, as the announcement for funding for the station has been made, local Labour councillor Elena Secas says she is delighted that Commissioner Harris has approved the capital spend.
“Castletroy is the fastest growing suburb area in Ireland, according to Google, and is in dire need of a garda station,” the Limerick City East councillor said.
“I have been campaigning on this issue for a long time and, once it was confirmed that it was included in the 2025-2030 capital programme, I have been calling for its provision to be expedited given the increase in the population and the increase in anti-social behaviour.”
Limerick TD Willie O’Dea, who has also been very vocal on the subject of the Castletroy station, added: “I believe that this announcement is the result of people power, as Cllr Joe Pond and I had taken up a petition for a new Garda Station, which was signed by hundreds of people.”
“The response to the petition in the Castletroy, Monaleen, and Annacotty areas was overwhelmingly in favour of the location of a Garda station in their vicinity.
“Over the years the need for a Garda station in Castletroy was always one of the most significant issues raised by local residents. Senior Gardaí had told me that they had made a business case for a new Garda station in Castletroy and thankfully the Garda Commissioner has now approved it.”
However not everyone has been so quick to laud the prospect of a new Garda station for Limerick, with Superintendent Andrew Lacy of Roxboro Garda Station warning a recent special meeting on anti-social behaviour that staffing a new station could be a major stumbling block.
“Having a Garda station is one thing, but having Gardaí to be in that Garda station is another thing. I am responsible for that side of the city and if I have a Garda station there then I need to be able to staff it and I need to put Gardaí in to operate it,” Superintendent Lacy told the meeting.