Tuesday, 17 October 2000
Dáil Eireann Debate
413. Mr. Bell asked the Minister for Education and Science the reason for the continuing delay in commencing the building of the new VEC college for the north side of Drogheda, County Louth, which was sanctioned by his predecessor over three years ago; his views on whether this is a satisfactory and reasonable period of time to have this important project delayed; when he will sanction the final stage; when he will submit the project for tender; his further views on whether the substantial delay in this project will increase the building costs substantially; the current cost in this regard; when the project will commence; the approximate building time; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [21981/00]
Minister for Education and Science (Dr. Woods): Architectural planning of the new vocational education committee college for the north side of Drogheda, County Louth continues. County Louth Vocational Education Committee recently submitted draft tender documents and specifications to my Department for approval. Officials will inform the school authority in due course if it is in order to proceed to tender.
Delays in having the proposed project progressed to this stage were due largely to design issues. Attention to detail is critically important at the planning stages of any project to ensure value for money and to assist in keeping post contract variations to a minimum.
Since the disclosure of the cost plan for the project could distort the tender process, I am not in a position to reveal the likely cost of this project at this stage. The contract period is expected to be 72 weeks.
Minister for Education and Science (Dr. Woods): My Department is currently assessing the long-term enrolment projections for Clinstown national school and when this assessment has been completed, the matter will be progressed further.
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