Sinn Fein calls for more affordable housing after ‘crazy’ land deal voted down
Micheal Martin said Ireland needs to ‘start building houses in some shape or form’.
The Government should not be handing over public land to private developers to build homes that are completely unaffordable to workers, the Sinn Fein leader has told the Dail.
Dublin City Council on Monday voted against transferring public land at Oscar Traynor Road in Dublin to a private developer to build 853 homes.
Mary Lou McDonald called for the delivery of public housing on public land and described the proposal for Oscar Traynor Road as a “bad deal” which would have seen “a hugely valuable site gifted to a private developer for free”.
This crazy deal represents the worst of Fine Gael housing policyMary Lou McDonald, Sinn Fein
“The full cost of these homes would have been 325,000 euro for a one-bed to 380,000 euro for a three-bed house,” she told the Dail. “That’s off the wall and certainly not affordable for the vast majority of working people.
“Under this deal the council will also have been paying over the odds for the social homes and worst of all the developer would have pocketed the full market value of the land. Land that that developer got for free and huge profits for them.”
“This crazy deal represents the worst of Fine Gael housing policy,” she added.
But Ms McDonald said it did not have to be that way and asked the Taoiseach to assist Dublin City Council to secure funding to ensure the site is developed “effectively” in a way that results in “really affordable housing for people who desperately need it”.
Micheal Martin said the country needed to put ideological arguments about housing to one side and at some point just “start building houses in some shape or form”.
Mr Martin said the country would not deliver 20,000 houses this year due to Covid-19 and that that figure was far fewer than the 33,000 the Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI) was recommending needed to be built each year to keep up with population growth.
The Fianna Fail leader said the Government was trying to reach construction of 25,000 homes but they would not reach that figure next year.
When it came to Oscar Traynor Road he said an “exhaustive” process had been undertaken in last number of years to determine the best way to develop the site which had been vacant since the 1970s.
He added that Housing Minister Darragh O’Brien was going to meet with Dublin City Council about the matter but that he did not think it would be “simple” because the decision by councillors was “significant”.