Councillors asked to approve plan for 1,600 Dublin homes

City council proposes to sell former estates for ‘mixed tenure’ developments

In total, 584 homes are planned for the old O’Devaney Gardens flats complex, 101 of which will be houses. Photograph Nick Bradshaw

In total, 584 homes are planned for the old O’Devaney Gardens flats complex, 101 of which will be houses. Photograph Nick Bradshaw

 

Plans to build more than 1,600 homes on three Dublin City Council sites, the city’s most ambitious housing programme since the property crash, will be presented to councillors on Friday.

Councillors will be asked to approve the “mixed tenure” developments, which include more than 1,000 apartments at O’Devaney Gardens, St Michael’s Estate and Oscar Traynor Road. Some 30 per cent of these will be for social housing, 20 per cent affordable rental, and 50 per cent private homes.

However, in what could prove a controversial move for two of the sites – the former council estates at O’Devaney Gardens in Dublin 7 and St Michael’s Estate in Inchicore – the council is proposing to sell part or all of the lands for development, rather than retaining them in public ownership.

The largest of the three sites, 17 hectares at the Santry end of Oscar Traynor Road, is not a former social housing development. It was bought by the council in the 1980s and has been the subject of several proposals that have never come to fruition.

It has been designated for 640 homes, more than 80 per cent of which will be apartments, including some duplex units, in blocks of up to six storeys. There will also be potential for a hotel on the site, which will be developed in phases, with the council intending to seek a single tender for the development.

Demolition

PhoenixPark

On Wednesday, Minister for Housing Simon Coveney approved €17.9 million in funding for these 56 homes, with construction expected to begin around Easter.

In total, 584 homes are planned for O’Devaney Gardens, 101 of which will be houses, with apartments in blocks of four to five storeys. Another 30 social homes will be located on a neighbouring site on Infirmary Road.

The council has put an indicative value of €14 million on the site and is proposing to offer all or parts of the land for sale by public tender, with conditions relating to tenure mix and future use.

Traditionally, the council has secured housing on its lands using “development agreements”, with the title to lands only transferring after the development is completed. When it first announced its vacant lands initiative two years ago, it had proposed keeping sites in public ownership.

It also plans to sell lands at St Michael’s Estate, but has yet to put a value on the site. Thornton Heights, a development of 75 social houses and apartments, was completed at the site of the former flat complex two years ago. The council plans 422 more homes, all of which will be apartments or duplexes.