Nama identifies potential for 25,000 houses on debtor sites

Funding in place to deliver 4,500 new houses and apartments in Dublin over next 18 months


Nama says it has identified potential for up to 25,000 new housing units in sites linked to its debtors.

The agency said funding was already in place to deliver 4,500 new houses and apartments in Dublin over the next 18 months.

Chief executive Brendan McDonagh said about 2,000 of those units are already under construction, with work on a further 1,000 ready to begin in six areas ranging from Ballsbridge to Ashtown.

Mr McDonagh was speaking at the National Housing Supply Conference, which was hosted by the agency in Dublin today.

He said sites linked to debts controlled by the agency could deliver 40 per cent of the demand for houses in the capital.

The Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI) calculates demand for approximately 7,000 houses in Dublin annually up to 2020.

Mr McDonagh said it had adopted a “tiered approach” to sites linked to its debtors, dividing them up on the basis of how “shovel-ready” they were.

His comments come in the wake of calls for Nama to do more to address the housing shortages in Dublin and elsewhere.

Only 10,000 new homes are expected to be built accross the State this year, whereas the Government and the ESRI believe 25,000 are required to meet demand.

Attending the conference, Minister for Finance Michael Noonan said the Government was focusing its attention on addressing any bottlenecks that could impede the sector in delivering the necessary increase in housing supply in the years ahead.

“But of course the Government cannot solve all of the problems that have to be addressed and the industry itself needs to play its role,” he said.

“ The Government is playing its part. But I want to emphasise that this is not a one-way street. The broad sector itself needs to demonstrate a renewed professionalism where shoddy practices and poor standards -whose legacy we are still dealing with today - are consigned to the past.”

“ We need a sector that can deliver both high-quality housing and infrastructure in a timely, competitive and sustainable way that meets the needs of our economy and society. Working together, I am confident that we are on course to achieve this.”

Construction Industry Federation director general Tom Parlon yesterday blamed the current housing supply shortage on the inability of developers to access finance.

He was speaking after figures from Central Statistics Office showed the volume of construction in Ireland’s residential property sector is continuing to fall despite the acute housing shortages in Dublin and elsewhere.