'Homes for €600k not affordable', concedes housing minister

Fears have been raised that homes at the Poolbeg Strategic Development Zones in Dublin could reach such prices
'Homes for €600k not affordable', concedes housing minister

Housing Minister Darragh O'Brien said: "I want affordable homes. €600,000 is not affordable and I think anyone would understand that €600,000 is not affordable."

Housing Minister, Darragh O'Brien, has said that any home for sale for €600,000 is "not affordable".

Fears have been raised that homes at the Poolbeg Strategic Development Zones (SDZ) in Dublin could see prices that high with no deal yet signed with the consortium that is building the "Pembroke Quarter".

SDZs are lands proposed to contain developments of economic or social importance to the State, and are enabled for fast track delivery of new residential and non-residential development.

The consortium — Ronan Group Real Estate, Oaktree Capital Management, Lioncor Developments, and the National Asset Management Agency — is set to provide a total of 1,000 social and affordable homes at the Irish Glass Bottle site.

A planning application for the first phase, the development of 600 apartments was made last Friday, with construction likely to commence at the beginning of next year.

However, Dublin City Council head of housing Brendan Kenny last month told TheJournal.ie that no decision had been made on pricing at the site.

Speaking at a press event in Dublin today, Mr O'Brien said that any home at that price is not affordable.

I want affordable homes. €600,000 is not affordable and I think anyone would understand that €600,000 is not affordable.

“I’m not commenting specifically on Poolbeg I want to say that to be very clear because I can’t.

"But what I’m saying in real terms what I’ve been focusing on is ensuring that we can deliver affordable homes for working people, that it’s affordable to them.

“Every application we put forward with regard to the affordable fund that we’ve established, we look at on its merits but if someone was to ask me in the normal course of events for a normal working individual, or indeed a couple, or a working family is €600,000 affordable? It’s not.”

Mr O'Brien also said that proposals to allow those in the Fair Deal scheme rent out homes could add as many as 9,000 homes to the housing market.

The 37.2-acre site is viewed as a key site in housing in the city, delivering 3,800 homes.

One-quarter of the units delivered will be allocated to social and affordable homes, which represents one of the largest developments of social and affordable housing in recent decades.

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