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11th October 2019 | Housing, Press Releases

Our housing crisis is worsening, we need to build – Cuffe

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Green Party MEP for Dublin Ciarán Cuffe will lead a tour of public housing in Dublin by bike this Saturday, 12th October.

The tour is taking place as part of Open House 2019, Ireland’s largest architectural festival.

Speaking before the tour, Ciarán Cuffe said:

“There are many fine examples across the City of good quality social housing, the majority of which was built at a time when the State did not have access to the resources it does now. The quality public housing built by Herbert Simms, City Architect for Dublin in the 1920s and 1930s in Chancery Street and Henrietta Place show us what can be achieved. Even more recently the high-density ten-story apartments designed by Reddy Associates in Heuston South Quarter and built fifteen years ago show what could be done today if the will was there from Government to achieve this. There is little reason, other than a lack of political will, to replicate this ambition today. 

“The recent Budget 2020 announcements from the Government will do little to ease our housing crisis. There really is no substitution for building high quality, social and affordable housing. And there is no reason that we can’t begin to do this immediately. The reason for holding this tour is to show what can be achieved if the will was there.

“If we look closely at Dublin City there are hundreds of hectares of land close to the city centre that could deliver the homes we need to tackle the housing crisis. What’s more, much of these lands are owned or controlled by the State making it easy to repurpose them for housing and related uses. I estimate that there is space for 15,000 homes within walking distance of Dublin’s O’Connell Street.  There are vast tracts of underutilised lands close to the city centre, they should be used to build high-quality apartment blocks with generous courtyards and play areas. 

“I have seen wonderful examples of high quality, eco-friendly, social and affordable housing in cities across Europe, in particular in Vienna. It’s time that we brought some of this learning to Dublin and begin to truly tackle our housing crisis.”