A plan to develop up to 2,800 “affordable homes”, parklands, commercial spaces, and sustainable transport links on State lands, in the heart of Limerick City, was launched this morning.
The project is the brainchild of the Land Development Agency (LDA), to transform lands centred around Colbert Rail Station, and incorporating new urban districts.
A supporting project to the Government’s Housing for All Strategy, it will be “the largest ever transfer of State land for housing”, according to the LDA.
The Colbert Station Quarter provides for transport-orientated development and is said to seek to achieve a vibrant mix of homes, landmark buildings, unique pedestrian and cycling infrastructure, employment space and play areas.
There will also be enhanced with facilities for health, education and other key services, which are to be set within a highly connected series of parklands.
Exciting features of the plan include a proposed new raised pedestrian walkway, cycleway and public realm space connecting Colbert Station to the rest of the city.
The lands marked out for development are “major strategic sites in Limerick’s Colbert Station, including lands owned by CIE and the HSE”.
These “under-utilised lands”, including at the rear of St Joseph’s Hospital, Mulgrave Street, have been prioritised for the first phase of housing, identified under the government’s Housing for All Strategy, subject to the public consultation and ongoing engagement with HSE.
John Coleman, chief executive of the LDA, said its objective is “to ensure the delivery of housing and supporting development on underused State land, to transform a city”.
Launching the plans, the Minister for Housing, Darragh O’Brien, said the project was “the most significant housing strategy in the history of the State”.
“The Housing for All Plan outlines plans for the activation of underused public lands to deliver much-needed homes. The Land Development Agency will not just develop land banks and build homes, it will also create sustainable communities and drive transformational change,” Minister O’Brien added.
Pat Daly, chief executive of Limerick City and County Council, said the development would significantly address the city’s social housing needs, and “serve as a magnet for economic development in our city” while “also supporting a more sustainable city, reducing reliance on private transport”.
A Draft Framework published today, accompanied by a Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA) and a Strategic Flood Risk Assessment, is open for public consultation until 11th November 2021, via www.colbertquarter.ie or www.lda.ie