Investors sought to build 1,500 rental homes on Dublin Council sites

The Irish Times reports today that Investors interested in building “public” homes on more than 30 hectares of vacant land are to be sought by Dublin City Council.

The council is to advertise this week for expressions of interest in the construction of almost 1,500 homes, combining social housing and private housing for rent on five council-owned sites to address the housing crisis.

Three of the sites are around the city’s north fringe. The other two are to the west of the city in Ballyfermot and Cherry Orchard. The council previously tried to provide public and private housing on its land using the public-private partnership process.

Under these schemes the council supplied the land and a developer built social and private housing. The schemes relied on the sale of private housing to fund the construction of social housing. Under the new model, housing would remain in the rental market, but unlike traditional social housing complexes the public housing scheme provides housing for both social and private tenants.

“This would provide a mix of housing for rent for persons from the social housing list and any other person who wishes to rent them,” the council’s head of housing Dick Brady said.

There were now, he said, many “intermediate families running into trouble in the private sector” in their ability to afford rent.

The housing would be delivered using a “consortium-led approach” to provide the finance, development and housing management of the estate for 30 years. The council hopes to attract “large-scale inward capital investment”, Mr Brady said.The consortium must have an institutional investor, a developer or builder, and a housing management provider on board.

The five plots of land chosen for the new scheme are not existing social housing estates. The largest plot, of almost 15 hectares at the junction of Coolock Lane and the M1, could provide 700 homes the council said.

Next largest is an 8.2-hectare site near Cherry Orchard Hospital, which could accommodate 400 homes.

A 6.3 acre site at the junction of the Malahide Road and Belcamp Lane, earmarked for residential development as part of the Clongriffin and Belmayne local area plan, could have 300 homes.

Smaller developments could be accommodated at a 0.7-hectare site on Kylemore Road in Ballyfermot, and a 0.47-hectare site on Bunratty Road in Coolock. These would have about 30 units each.

Other council owned sites could be developed using this approach in the future Mr Brady said. Source: The Irish Times.