A DERELICT flat complex on Moss Street is to be handed over to private developers by Dublin City Council (DCC).
The 100-year-old red brick flats are located on Moss Street and Townsend Street near Tara Street, close to City Quay in the south-east inner city.
They have been vacant for the past decade following the council’s decision to move tenants out because the accommodation did not meet modern living standards.
Now, DCC will give the complex to Brigante Investments – a subsidiary of Tetrarch Capital, who will apply to develop the one acre site.
The plan is that the developers will construct a hotel, retail and office units on the site. They will also develop 20 residential units, which will then be handed over to the council along with one commercial unit.
The decision to redevelop the site through the private sector was reached due to the high estimated costs of restoring the old units.
When preliminary plans were drawn up in 2013, the cost of work was estimated to be around €2.2 million.
However, this estimation turned out to be inaccurate as the flats had deteriorated significantly since the last survey was taken in 2007 – leaving the actual budget at €5.5 million for 19 apartments.
The building was completed in 1917 and is among the earliest purpose-built social housing in the city.
It was constructed in response to a housing crisis at the time which saw many Dubliners live in poor conditions in tenements. As the building is not listed, the developers will have free reign to demolish it.
City councillor Ciaran Cuffe (GP) said he would prefer if the site stayed in DCC’s ownership. The former city architect told The Gazette he thinks the plans to privately redevelop the site “makes the council look bad”.
He said that the lack of funding from the Government contributed to the council losing ownership of the complex. Cllr Cuffe asked why the building had been left vacant for so long, allowing it to deteriorate to such a level that redeveloping it would cost more.
He added“I think we need a conservation report on the building. It is a part of the heritage of the city and it would be a pity to lose it if the developers decide to demolish it.”