448 new social housing units for Dublin on the way

A plan to sell off Dublin City Council land to private developers has been passed on the condition that social housing will be increased to 30%.

The plan involves the sale of council land in three areas of the city, Coolock, Inchicore and the north city, to provide 1,345 housing units, including 448 social units.

Of the remaining units, some will be earmarked for starter homes with mortgages being taken through the city council.

Some others will be cost rental, which means tenants will pay 20% below market rent in a scheme designed for those on low income who do not qualify for social housing.

The building programme, the council’s biggest since the regeneration of Ballymun, is to start with the largest of the three sites, a 17-hectare plot at Coolock Lane, at the Santry end of Oscar Traynor Road, just east of the entrance to the Dublin Port Tunnel.

In St Michael’s Estate, Inchicore the number will increase from 30 to 100 while there will be 133 such units at O’Devaney Gardens in Dublin 7.

Under the original proposal, affordable and cost rental units were included in the 30% provision.

The amendment was proposed by the Chair of the Housing Committee, Councillor Daithí Doolin of Sinn Féin, and passed by a vote after the council’s Housing Manager Dick Brady said there was no objection by council management.

Speaking after the result of the vote Councillor Doolan said:

“The government continues to starve local authorities of essential funding for housing. This is Dublin City Council attempting to deliver homes despite government’s best efforts.”

The plan was proposed by council officials following the collapse of public-private partnerships.

Under the Housing Land Initiative the sites would be sold to developers under a contract that specifies the number and type of housing units, as well as other conditions such as 20% open space for the Oscar Traynor site.