More than 1,000 homes planned for council site in north Dublin

Fingal County Council aims to build social and private homes on Donabate land

More than 1,000 social and private homes are to be built in Donabate, north Dublin, in what will be the single largest development of local-authority-owned lands in the State.

Fingal County Council is gauging the interest of developers in building on council-owned land at Ballymastone, close to the sea at the east side of Donabate village. The houses and apartments will be a mix of public, affordable and private housing, with the private homes targeted at first-time buyers.

The 30 hectare site will be ready for development next year, the council said, following the completion of the €14 million Donabate distributor road, which is being built using the State’s Local Infrastructure Housing Activation Fund, that pays for major infrastructure projects to make vacant sites viable for housing,

In total, the council has identified more than 200 acres of its land across the north Dublin area that it wants to use to provide public and private housing. The private elements are most likely to be developed using the Government’s new affordable purchase and affordable rental schemes, where low-income workers who do not qualify for social housing can rent or buy homes at a discount on market rates.


‘Project Talamh’

The Fingal housing scheme, which will be called Project Talamh, is similar to Dublin City Council’s “vacant land initiative” through which the council plans to use private developers to build 1,644 homes at three sites it owns in the city.

The “mixed tenure” developments at O’Devaney Gardens, St Michael’s Estate and Oscar Traynor Road have been designated for 50 per cent private homes, 30 per cent social housing and 20 per cent affordable housing.

However, the Donabate scheme will be the single largest mixed housing development currently proposed for council lands. The estate will be part of overall expansion plans for the seaside village which will also see a new educational and recreational campus and a new "greenway" cycle and pedestrian path over the Broadmeadow estuary to Malahide.

Using private developers to build on council land was necessary to secure housing, Fingal’s director of planning AnnMarie Farrelly said.

“We are strongly focused on increasing housing supply in Fingal and realise that we need to work with the private sector to ensure that we produce the right mix of housing on our lands.”

The council has issued a “market sounding” questionnaire to gauge the interest of developers in building 1,000-1,200 homes on the Donabate lands, as a first step in their development.

Olivia Kelly

Olivia Kelly

Olivia Kelly is Dublin Editor of The Irish Times