New Clara fire station plans revealed

Plans for a potential new fire station development in Clara have taken a major step forward.

Offaly County Council recently published tenders for a lead design consultant to oversee the design, planning and construction of the proposed new fire station at Raheen in Clara.

The council is seeking to engage a single firm of design consultants, which, it says, will deliver and mange the project through planning detailed design, as well as tendering and supervising the actual construction.

The council says the current station's location on a confined site prevents the prospect of an upgrade. It said the current building can no longer meet the functional requirements of a fire station.

The council says the new fire station will be located on the site of the existing local authority area office and council yard.

While preliminary site layout designs have been undertaken, the council is seeking a design team to evaluate and redesign them to ensure they fall within the financial constraints of the project.

The council says the contract with the design team could commence in September and may run for at least 28 months but possibly for up to five years given the various approval stages for the project.

The site of the proposed station is on a key approach road to Clara and provides an “ideal opportunity to ensure that a landmark public building is clearly visible to the public and also enhances the approach to the town of Clara”.

The fire station will be designed to house two fire service vehicles.

The council is envisaging that the planning application for the project will be submitted by the end of this year, through the Part VII process by which council submit plans for local authority development for public consultation.

It is estimated that the design stage will conclude by February 2022 and tenders will then be sought from building contractors.

Construction works are expected to commence in the third quarter of 2022 and to be complete by the fourth quarter of 2022.

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