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Wednesday 18 September 2019

Reopened station in Shane Ross's constituency to close at night and reallocate gardaí from other areas

Pilot scheme: Minister Shane Ross and former Councillor Kevin Daly outside the Garda station. Photo: Justin Farrelly
Pilot scheme: Minister Shane Ross and former Councillor Kevin Daly outside the Garda station. Photo: Justin Farrelly

Fionnán Sheahan

Transport Minister Shane Ross's much-hyped pet project Garda station won't be open through the night.

And the reopened Stepaside station will take gardaí from other suburbs on the southside of Dublin, rather than obtaining additional new staff.

The reopening of the station was a key demand of Mr Ross when the Independent Alliance entered Government.

The south Dublin Garda station is one of six being reopened under a pilot scheme.

The estimated cost of refurbishing and opening the station is €1.5m.

Mr Ross has denied the prioritisation of Stepaside in his Dublin Rathdown constituency was a case of "stroke politics".

Last year, after three shops in the village were broken into during the night, the minister said: "And they wonder why we need a Garda station 24/7. The reopening cannot come soon enough."

However, Garda management says the current plan is for the station to only be open from 7am to 9pm daily.

"It will not be a 24-hour station," Garda management said in a letter to Independent councillor Michael Fleming.

There will be three sergeants, 24 gardaí and one staff member based at the station.

Gardaí at the station will be "reallocated from within the DMR East Division", the letter says.

The Garda Dublin Metropolitan Region East Division covers southside suburbs, including Dún Laoghaire, Blackrock, Cabinteely, Shankill, Dundrum, Leopardstown, Foxrock, Ballinteer and Mount Merrion.

Mr Fleming said he was "extremely concerned" at the development.

"This certainly was not what I had envisaged for the Stepaside station. I wanted to see new gardaí in our district and not existing resources being reallocated. I also had hoped that the station would be open on a full-time basis and not 7am to 9pm daily," he said.

Irish Independent

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