SENIOR gardaí support calls for a new garda station in Limerick, the Seanad has heard.
In recent months, there have been many calls for a new Garda station in Castletroy to serve the surrounding areas, which are currently covered by Henry Street.
“Henry Street Garda station serves not only city centre areas but also all the way out as far as Montpelier and Castleconnell,” Fine Gael Senator Maria Byrne said.
“Realistically, the station does not have the resources or manpower to service those areas fully,” she added.
“Recently there was a serious break-in, but, unfortunately, the people affected had to wait quite a while for assistance because there was no Garda car available to deal with the incident,” she said, speaking in the Seanad.
“Local and national politicians in all parties and all of the residents' associations support the call for a new Garda station.”
“I also understand it now has the support of senior gardaí in Limerick.”
The initial response to the call for a new station in Castletroy was that it was “not warranted”, she added.
“Following the discussions with senior gardaí, I understand the Garda is considering the question of whether a Garda station is warranted in the area.”
“The gardaí provide a wonderful service but this area is greatly expanding.”
In response, Minister of State Mary Mitchell O’Connor said a new station for Castletroy is not included in the Garda Síochána building and refurbishment programme, which runs until 2021.
“The Minister (for Justice Charlie Flanagan) and I very much understand that people want to see a visible Garda presence in their own locality,” she said.
An overall Garda workforce of 21,000 personnel is hoped to be achieved by 2021, to include 15,000 garda members, 2,000 reserve members and 4,000 civilians, Minister O’Connor added.
“I will make sure I inform the Minister, Deputy Flanagan, of what the Senator has said. I will also take a copy of her contribution.”