More than 1,700 affordable homes will be built as part of an €84 million package to deliver infrastructure on local authority sites, Minister for Housing Eoghan Murphy has said.
Mr Murphy said the Government had agreed to provide a second tranche of funding to 25 projects around the State under the “serviced sites fund” which supports the delivery of infrastructure on local authority sites.
The projects given the green light are in Cork, Dublin, Galway, Kildare, Kilkenny, Limerick, Waterford, Wicklow and Wexford. The Department of Housing says 1,770 affordable homes will be delivered as a result of the funding, out of a total of 6,200 affordable homes planned under the services fund.
“We’ve seen recently that house prices have been cooling down, even falling in some parts of the country as supply increases. But for too many people home ownership still remains out of reach,” Mr Murphy said.
“Unless the Government steps in to bridge the gap, young couples and workers may not be able to afford to buy their own home in our cities and large towns. That’s why we are using local authority land to build more affordable homes for young workers and couples, and that’s why these approvals announced today are so important.
“The market will not fix our housing problems alone; the Government must lead on providing more affordable homes.”
Rebuilding Ireland plan
The serviced sites fund has a total of €310 million available out to 2021 as part of the Rebuilding Ireland plan. Mr Murphy said the eventual aim was to build 10,000 affordable homes as part of the same scheme.
“Housing, and in particular affordable housing, is one of the critical challenges facing our country. That is why I sought and achieved a trebling of the serviced sites fund in last year’s budget, to provide €310 million to get local authority sites up and running to deliver at least 6,200 affordable homes, working towards a programme of 10,000, where they are most needed. My department will now work with local authorities to develop these proposals and bring the plans to fruition.”
Speaking in June, Mr Murphy admitted the first tranche of homes would not be built until next year.
He said the “overall cost and timing of delivery for these projects is contingent upon the completion of planning and procurement in the first instance, and local authorities are working to achieve delivery as quickly as possible, with the first tranche of affordable homes expected to be delivered next year”.