Long wait for new Portlaoise train station carpark and apartments

Lynda Kiernan

Reporter:

Lynda Kiernan

Portlaoise train station

Portlaoise train station

A new council owned carpark for Portlaoise train station will not be ready for possibly two more years.

There is no timeline yet on when work will start to build social housing apartments, and the public carpark beside Portlaoise train station.

Planning approval was given for the shared scheme on the old CBS school site, back in 2020. 

Laois County Council gave the latest update on the CBS project at the March meeting of Portlaoise Municipal District.

“The Part 8 Planning submission for this scheme was approved in 2020. It is currently at detailed design stage with surveying and other investigative work ongoing.

"It is expected that CLUID Housing Association will be in a position to seek funding approval under the Capital Acquisition and Leasing Facility Scheme later this year in order for the main scheme to commence onsite.

The update had been requested by Cllr Catherine Fitzgerald who tabled a motion about the CBS site as well as the derelict Portlaoise convent, also to be repurposed for social housing in the town centre. 

Cllr Fitzgerald asked if the public carpark beside the train station in the CBS plan can be built before the houses.

Director of Services Simon Walton said however that it will be built at the same time.

“The contractual agreement with the owner of the CBS site is that these are linked with the housing and will be undertaken and completed at the same time. It is correct that the key challenge for the council is to get on with delivering this project that has been funded. But there are various stages that have to be gone through and that is what we are doing,” he said.

The CBS housing scheme is a turnkey project in collaboration with Clúid and the site owner. 

Laois County Council’s Director of Services for housing Joe Delaney last January said that site work at the CBS lands will hopefully start this year, and finish by 2022 or 2023.

The plan is for 67 housing units and a council owned public carpark with 94 spaces that rail commuters can use.