'Protected' plan for Stepaside station
A government minister has called for the closed Stepaside Garda Station to be listed as a "protected structure".
The preferred option for the reopening of the south Dublin station is to install a modular station in the car park of the original building, which would see the facility brought to the site in constructed sections.
Culture Minister Josepha Madigan has welcomed the modular station proposal, which will lead to garda resources on the ground in the area.
However, she has also instructed officials in her department to investigate if the station is suitable to be listed as a protected structure.
"If so, I would like to see the 'old' garda building put to use as a community facility rather than just lying idle," the Fine Gael TD said.
The building is in a "dilapidated" state, Justice Minister Charlie Flanagan has said.
The station has structural problems and asbestos, and it is understood its refurbishment could cost up to €2m.
The reopening was a red-line issue for Independent Alliance minister Shane Ross in negotiations to form a government.
A report found that the station was to be one of six reopened in a pilot programme, but a report by the influential Public Accounts Committee (PAC) has since questioned the value for money in reopening the station.
At a PAC hearing, Assistant Commissioner Pat Leahy said he would have chosen to open another station based on policing resources.