A new courthouse was opened yesterday in Cork, described as what is now “probably the best court facilities in the country” by Chief Justice Frank Clarke.
The refurbishment and extension, costing a total of €34.8m, is located at the site of the Old Model Primary School on Anglesea Street.
Minister for Justice and Equality Charlie Flanagan attended the opening, along with Mr Clarke.
With a floor area of close to 8,500 square metres, features of the courthouse include six courtrooms and a new public office, a vulnerable witness suite, victim support room, legal practitioners room, enhanced custody facilities, jury reception room and consultation rooms.
“I am confident that this new courthouse will meet the needs of Cork and the surrounding area for many decades to come,” said Minister Flanagan.
The Minister added:
“The extension of this courthouse is going to make a huge difference to those who use it. Whether a person comes here to work, to seek vindication, to face justice, or as a jury member to pass judgement… everyone will now enter a courthouse which integrates the old and the new, respecting our built heritage exemplified in the Model School and contrasting this with a modern building sculpted from Irish limestone to provide a modern courthouse for Cork City.”
According to a spokesperson for the Department of Justice and Equality, the arrival of this new courthouse is the biggest project in the Courts Public Private Partnership Bundle which has delivered a total of 31 courtrooms and 36,000 square metres of accommodation nationwide.
It follows the opening of new and refurbished courthouses in Drogheda, Letterkenny, Wexford, Limerick and Waterford over recent months.
The last project in the Courts PPP Bundle, the substantial refurbishment and extension of Mullingar Courthouse, is due to be delivered in the coming week and opened later this year.