Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform, Paschal Donohoe, T.D.,and Simon Coveney, T.D., Minister for Housing, Planning, Community & Local Government today (Wednesday) announced Stage 1 approval of the Regeneration Scheme for O’Devaney Gardens during a site visit.
Approval in principle for stage 1 provides for the construction of 56 social homes at a cost of €17.9million. This is the first phase of a mixed tenure development which has been the subject of discussions between the Minister and the councillors to secure 30% social, 20% affordable and 50% private development of these lands of approximately 600 homes altogether
“I am pleased to be here this afternoon to approve the first phase of the regeneration of O’Devaney Gardens. Phase one will kick start the regeneration of this area. I am keen to see the development of this large site in the centre of Dublin City. What more could you ask for – a short walk into town and the Phoenix Park right on your doorstep. There is considerable potential for this flagship project to develop up to 600 homes on the site, of which up to 50% could be social and/or affordable units. I am anxious for the City Council to progress this project at speed so we can get on with re-energising this area.” said Minister Coveney.
The 56 social houses are all that would be eligible under phase 1 and forms part of the existing planning permission (110 social units). The development of the site, including the remaining 54 social units (in order to fund the other dwellings in phase 1) is an integral part of delivering the existing permission. The intention of the LA is that the remainder of the lands will be developed by a private developer to provide approximately 300 private dwellings, 120 affordable dwellings and the remaining 70 social dwellings to deliver the ratios agreed by the Minister and the councillors.
Minister Donohoe said: ‘It gives me great pleasure to join Minister Coveney in announcing Stage 1 approval of the Regeneration Scheme for O’Devaney Gardens today. As a TD for Dublin Central, I know O’Devaney well. The economic collapse, which delayed the regeneration of this and other PPP projects for a number of years, means O’Devaney Gardens, and its residents, have suffered a number of set-backs and seen a few of false dawns down through the years. This Government has prioritised housing as the number one issue to be dealt with. This has resulted in funds being made available to get essential projects such as this off the ground. Just a stone’s throw from Dublin city centre, the redevelopment of O’Devaney Gardens will, ultimately, provide a variety of much needed homes for hundreds of people. Set in a mature part of Dublin that is well served by public transport, including the Luas, this development signals an exciting period ahead for the area and the surrounding local communities. I look forward to the progress that will be made on Stage 1 and with Dublin City Council across the weeks and months ahead’.
Note for Editors
The previous housing scheme at O’Devaney Gardens was constructed in 1954 comprised of 278 residential units, located in 13 four-storey blocks, and consisting of 100% public housing all owned by Dublin City Council. By the 1990s a range of problems in the complex had developed and this led to a decision to demolish the housing stock there and to invest in the delivery of a sustainable regeneration programme.
O’Devaney Gardens was one of the six proposed PPP housing projects during the early part of this century that the Council wished to progress. The PPP project comprised the following:
- Demolition of all flats
- Construction of 280 new social units (including 30 Senior Citizen units)
- Construction of 250 affordable homes
- Construction of 299 private apartments
- Construction of 2,000 sq. m Community building
- Up to 850 sq. m commercial space.
August 2005: Michael McNamara & Co. and Castlethorn Construction were chosen by the Council as the preferred bidder for the project.
May 2008: Due to the changing economic climate, the City Council was not in a position to progress a number of projects that had been planned under Public Private Partnership (PPP) arrangements and it suspended its PPP programme. With support from the Department, the City Council established a multi-disciplinary Special Housing Taskforce to examine alternative re-development options. Since then, the Department has worked closely with the Council in relation to proposals for a number of Council schemes, including O’Devaney Gardens. However, other regeneration projects, such as St. Michael’s Estate (completed in 2014) were advanced by the Council ahead of O’Devaney Gardens.