A land reserved for the decentralization of the Ministry of Agriculture could serve as a basis for the Civil Defense of Laois, we learned in the municipal council.
Cllr Willie Aird said Civil Defense was looking for a base for the headquarters in Portlaoise. He said a yard on Mountrath Road was being considered, but he described the site as very tight.
Cllr Aird said “there is an area of land up there that Charlie McCreavy was going to build the Department of Agriculture on.” He said a 110 kV line had been moved, which “probably cost millions at the time”, to facilitate the site. “That land is up there now and has been unused all this time,” Cllr Aird said at the meeting. He asked council to follow up on the matter.
Cllr Caroline Dwane Stanley said there was a clear response from council regarding a site for civil protection. “The last thing we need from here are mixed messages,” she commented.
Service manager Simon Walton said at the moment he was of the opinion the preferred location was on Mountrath Road. However, he pointed out that the project is still in the preliminary stages. “We’re watching. That’s not to say that if a suitable property comes on the market, we won’t change tactics,” he explained.
Asked by Cllr Dwane Stanley if the Mountrath Road site was too small, Mr Walton said: ‘We wouldn’t look at it if we didn’t think it could fit there.’
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