608 new social and cost rental homes in construction in Dublin

by Gazette Reporter
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Respond, Ireland’s largest construction-led Approved Housing Body and service provider, has 608 new social and cost rental homes in construction in Dublin. It delivered 208 new social and cost rental homes across the county last year.

Respond now owns and manages 1728 homes across Dublin, providing secure and affordable accommodation for 3961 tenants.

The announcement was made this week by Minister for Housing, Local Government and Heritage Darragh O’Brien. Respond is on track to triple the number of social and cost rental homes it has in construction to over 4,100 in the coming months, expanding its construction programme over the next 12 months to €2BN.

Supported by Local Authorities, Respond has secured fixed price contracts with several leading developers and building contractors to deliver large mixed tenure housing developments across Dublin and Cork.  With Government support, the organisation could deliver 700 of these new homes this year and a further 900 by the end of 2024. Respond’s home building programme currently has 1,396 social and cost rental homes in construction across the country.

Respond has begun construction on 3,347 homes since March 2018, and now manages 7,084 properties providing homes for 16,541 tenants. While challenged by rising construction sector costs, last year alone it delivered 484 new social and cost rental homes and commenced construction of a further 460 homes. This includes the final completion of large mixed-tenure developments at Charlestown, Finglas (138 homes) and Enniskerry Road, Stepaside (155 homes). It also progressed its Long Mile Road development, which will provide 153 homes when completed later this year.

Eight five per cent of Respond’s development schemes are construction-led. By adopting a construction-led approach to delivering new homes, which sees Respond buy sites outright and finance construction through Fixed Price Contracts, Respond has been able to save up to €60,000 per unit compared to a housing acquisition model. These projects are managed through staged payments verified by independent Quantity Surveyors which helps to manage both cost and quality delivering value for money for the State.

Respond Spokesperson Niamh Randall said: “Our Annual Report details the ongoing effort and commitment of our development and housing teams to help alleviate the urgent need for more social and cost rental housing across the country and to support the Government’s Housing for All strategy.

“Our focus is on adding to the national housing stock, and the Fixed Price Contracts we have agreed with several developers mean we could quickly triple the number of social and cost rental homes we have in construction to 4,100 with Government support. These are large scale, development projects which will provide the volume of homes desperately needed, while also building inclusive, long-term sustainable communities. The sites are ideally placed in our biggest cities close to amenities including schools and parks, public transport routes and commercial centres. Each development will follow our evidence informed Housing Services Delivery model and include community hubs, with several of the additional community services we also provide, including Early Learning and School Age Care services, and services for older people, readily accessible for families.”

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