Just 19 social houses to be built in Minister’s constituency

Senator from Dublin Bay South says ‘dismal’ figures highlight Murphy’s lack of focus on issue

Minister for Housing Eoghan Murphy during an inspection of 29 new rapid-build social housing units at Knocknarea Court, Drimnagh. File photograph: Gareth Chaney Collins

Minister for Housing Eoghan Murphy during an inspection of 29 new rapid-build social housing units at Knocknarea Court, Drimnagh. File photograph: Gareth Chaney Collins

 

Just 19 social houses will be built in the constituency of the Minister for Housing Eoghan Murphy this year.

The figures were released by Dublin City Council as part of its Housing Development Plan for 2018.

The numbers are in comparison to the 342 social houses to be built in Dublin Bay South’s neighbouring constituency Dublin South-Central this year.

A spokesman for the Mr Murphy said this was a matter for Dublin City Council and did not wish to make any comment.

Labour Senator Kevin Humphreys described the figures as “dismal” and “woeful” insisting more social houses were built in the constituency at the height of the recession.

Mr Humphreys said thousands of people are on the social housing waiting list in the Minister’s constituency, with some there for more than 12 years.

He added: “It is an indictment of the Minister for Housing to see only 19 units built in his constituency and highlights his lack of focus on social housing.

“There is an enormous social housing problem in the constituency. There is no balanced development at all.”

The Government has been repeatedly criticised for its failure to address the deficits in social housing but has committed to the build of 25,000 social houses every year between now and 2021.

These figures include newly built properties and vacant local authority housing refurbished under a State “voids” scheme. In 2018, 4,969 of the 25,000 houses are expected to be direct builds.

Cliche

Green Party TD for Dublin Bay South Eamon Ryan said the Government was failing by relying on the market to resolve its housing problems.

Mr Ryan added: “The market will churn out loads of €1 million apartments but they will not build housing that local people’s sons or daughters can afford.

“The cliche about Dublin Bay South is not true, it is a real mixed area and it benefits from that and we do not want to create a millionaire’s row. This cannot be where we go with this part of the city.”

There are more than 92,000 people on social housing lists across the country.

The Minister for Housing has acknowledged the State must increase its efforts in this area and build far more social houses than it currently is.

Mr Murphy has also written to the Minister for Finance Paschal Donohoe to examine the tax treatment of landlords who commit to the delivery of long-term social housing.

The correspondence, co-signed by the Minister for Children Katherine Zappone, sought to have the matter addressed as part of this year’s budget.