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Minister for Housing's announcement on the construction of social housing lacks any ambition for Dublin – Doolan

6 October, 2016 - by Daithí Doolan

Responding to reports on Minister Coveney's plan, Sinn Féin Cllr Daithí Doolan, chairperson of Dublin city Council's housing committee said:

“Dublin is in the midst of an unprecedented housing crisis. This crisis has been brought about by consecutive governments slashing funding for council housing and the private developers being allowed to hold this city to ransom. The crisis must be tackled head on.

“Unfortunately Minster Coveney has failed to do that. His plan will provide more funding for private rented sector and will turn reality in to a virtue. Unfortunately neither of these will provide long term sustainable housing for the 29,000 applicants of Dublin City Council's housing list or for the thousands of homeless families in the city.

“The government plan will provide €75m for repairs to private rented properties so they will be let out to those on the housing list. Yet these same tenants will not be given adequate protection to prevent them from being made homeless again in the future. Money will also be provided to Dublin City Council to repair empty council properties. But the reality is less than 1% are empty. If the voids were all made liveable tomorrow, it will make little difference to our housing crisis. It is a good headline but nothing of substance.

“What is needed is government funding to develop council land and funding to buy more land so we can continue with our housing strategy. We have agreed plans for O'Devaney Gardens. We also have plans for St. Michaels estate, lands on Oscar Traynor Road and 20 other sites. Funding is the essential ingredient that is missing. Meanwhile state land at the Point Village and at Connolly Station is being sold to private developers. This is unacceptable. Minister Coveney should be providing Dublin City Council with the funds to buy this land to provide social, affordable and private housing. Dublin City Council, not private land lords or developers, are best placed to develop housing to meet the needs of this city.

“The minister's housing plan makes good headlines but lacks any ambition for Dublin City.”

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