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Dublin: 3°C Wednesday 20 January 2021
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Alan Kelly admits over-budget Ballymun homes 'by no means went to plan'

The cost of each house could reach over €240k.

Image: Sasko Lazarov

ALAN KELLY HAS said the rapid build housing for homeless families in Ballymun are “the fastest houses ever built in the history of Ireland”.

However, speaking about the project, Minister Kelly said “by no means did everything go to plan”.

Earlier this week, RTÉ reported the cost could reach €243,000 per unit, far more than the €100,000 figure originally discussed for modular housing units.

Correspondence between Dublin City Council and the Department of Environment, obtained by RTÉ, shows the ”estimated total cost” is put at €5.3 million.

Discussing the issue of housing in the Dáil yesterday following a vote for Taoiseach, Minister Kelly said this was the first time that Dublin City Council had been charged with such as task, so it deserved some “leeway”.

Kelly said there was a premium to be paid for the homes to be built in such a short timeline.

I anticipate that the next round of procurement will run much smoother and represents part of an overall solution.

He said the overall costs are being finalised, but said the homes were needed urgently.

I remind people that these homes are for people currently residing in hotels. In that regard they will pay for themselves in terms of the savings generated from the State not having to pay expensive hotel bills.

Kelly said there is ”no panacea to the housing problem”.

Yesterday, the proposal to establish committee on housing and homelessness was approved in the Dáil.

TDs discussed the issue of housing until late into the evening yesterday, with independent TD Michael Fitzmaurice saying it was time for the department to “start thinking outside the box”.

The Department of Environment also published the action report on housing, outlining progress and future plans for housing needs.

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