AN astroturf pitch for five-a-side football, a handball alley and a new garden for green-fingered inmates are among the new facilities being planned in the redevelopment of Limerick prison, Minister for Justice Frances Fitzgerald has said.
While the main contractor has not yet been appointed, Minister Fitzgerald has said in reply to a series of parliamentary questions from TDs that she is pleased with how the plans are progressing.
The Irish Prison Service has previously put a starting date of late 2015 on a project that will see the end of slopping out in Limerick Prison, which has some of the oldest and most overcrowded facilities in the prison estate.
Minister Fitzgerald confirmed to Sinn Fein’s Deputy Aengus O’Snodaigh that there had been changes in the original scope of works planned.
These included changes in boundaries to accommodate the new criminal courts complex and “the decision to construct a new stand-alone secure female prison facility for the Munster region on the site”, which had resulted in a need to relocate a car park, workshops and stores.
“The revised scope also includes a plan to incorporate an enhanced outdoor recreation area and yards, including a new astro-turf facility for 5- a-side football, a green area for horticultural activities, and a facility for handball,” the minister said.