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07/05/2015

Social housing programme kicks-off

Words: Roger Milne

The government has announced plans to build 1,700 housing units in the first phase of its ambitious country-wide €3.8 billion social housing programme.

Initially, some 3,000 construction jobs will be created as 100 separate projects get under way at a cost of €312m.

The announcement marks the first phase of a programme designed to eliminate housing waiting lists by 2020 and provide 35,000 homes through a combination of purchase, direct build and long-term leasing.

Schemes will get under way in each local authority area, ranging from single units in rural areas to projects of 50 or more homes in Dublin.

Environment minister Alan Kelly said the announcement was the beginning of addressing the housing crisis, but he stressed more funding was needed.

“This is the first major investment in local authority housing for many years,” he said. “It represents a good start, but with much more needing to be done.”

The figures show the highest spend is in South Dublin County Council, where €40.8 million will be spent on delivering 203 homes.

Some 6,217 people are currently on the council's housing waiting list.

Across the four Dublin local authorities, about €116 million will be spent on creating 566 units.

The Department of the Environment said most schemes were “shovel-ready” with planning permission in place, and that all would be completed by 2017.

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