Councillors vote paves the way for 1,200 social, affordable and private homes in Ballymastone - Construction Network Ireland - Construction Network Ireland

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Published in Construction on 26/05/2021

Councillors vote paves the way for 1,200 social, affordable and private homes in Ballymastone

CNI Editor reports

At a special four-hour meeting of Fingal County Council tonight councillors voted by 31 votes to nine to approve the disposal of 28 hectares of land at Ballymastone, Donabate, which will lead to the construction of up to 1,200 social, affordable and private homes by Glenveagh Living Ltd.

There will be a tenure mix of 20% social housing, 20% affordable housing and 60% private housing and more than 11% of the site will be developed as public open space with small parks and pocket parks in proximity to housing. Community facilities including parks, creches, EV charging points and improved transport links will also be provided.

There will be a guaranteed delivery of affordable homes to first time buyers at a unit cost of €250,000 to €270,000 and the entire project, which could commence as early as 2022, will be delivered over a 10-year timeframe that takes account of the number of houses the local market can absorb at any one time.

Welcoming the decision, the Chief Executive of Fingal County Council, AnnMarie Farrelly, said: “Our mandate from Government is to provide housing and, since 2015, we have used many mechanisms to ensure the construction of social, affordable and private homes across Fingal. We have spent the last three years developing this particular model, which can deliver mixed tenure residential development as outlined in the Donabate Local Area Plan. I would like to thank the councillors for their overwhelming support for our effort to improve the supply of housing in Fingal.”

This local authority driven project has seen the Council establish the vision and define the parameters and constraints for the project to ensure that the Council’s Executive maintains a strong level of oversight and control over the development of the site.

The three-year procurement process followed best practice and had the advice of expert procurement, legal and financial advisors from specialist advisors that the Council engaged and also from the National Development Finance Agency (NDFA) in a process which adhered to all EU, national and Council procurement and statutory requirements.

Matthew McAleese, Fingal County Council’s Director of Planning and Strategic Infrastructure, also welcomed the councillors’ decision and said: “The Council now has a housing scheme with 1,194 homes which, subject to planning, could realise the delivery of the first phase of mixed tenure housing in 2022 and substantially alleviate the housing crisis in both the short and medium term. The project has met all the requirements of the Public Spending Code, including the requirement for robust governance structures, through the Project Talamh Steering Group which is chaired by the Chief Executive with representatives from the NDFA and the Department of Housing, Planning & Local Government on the Steering Group.”

The high-quality residential development fully meets the Council’s stated policy objectives, which include the delivery of homes of the right type, quality and cost at the right locations to address housing supply demands as well as leveraging the value of the Council’s land to provide homes at affordable prices in order to address the issue of housing affordability in the market

Following the disposal of the land, the Ballymastone project will move to the planning application stage which will provide an opportunity for public consultation.

“I now look forward to progressing our plans for Church Fields in Dublin 15, Cappagh in Dublin 11, Hayestown in Rush, Ballymastone in Donabate, and Hacketstown in Skerries where we are working with the Land Development Agency,” said Ms Farrelly.