KEEPING YOU UPDATED ON O’DEVANEY GARDENS PROJECT
As your LOCAL Stoneybatter City Councillor and a Chair of the O’Devaney Gardens Community Consultative Forum, I want to make sure you are fully up to date of how the O’Devaney Gardens redevelopment project is being advanced. So, my update comes in two parts. Firstly, how things are progressing with the ongoing building work on site and plans associated with that. Secondly, how the remaining, approximately 640 new homes, will be delivered and the means upon which that is advanced.
1.ONGOING BUILDING WORK
Construction of the first 56 public homes is progressing well; however, there has been a slight delay, per the schedule agreed between Dublin City Council and the contractor. Despite this, completion of the first aspect of building works on site is expected to be delivered in early 2020.
The existing road through O’Devaney Gardens will have to be reconfigured. Dublin City Council has advised that it expects the reconfigured road layout will be in place by the end of April 2019.
2.HOW THE REMAINING 640 HOMES WILL BE DELIVERED?
In January 2017, City Councillors agreed to the redevelopment of the O’Devaney Gardens lands along 50:30:20 housing division. 50% would be owner-occupier, 30% public housing with the remaining 20% a mix of affordable purchase and affordable rental. Delivering these new homes would be undertaken through the implementation of a Development Agreement between a Contractor and Dublin City Council. So, what is the timeline for the reaching of such a Development Agreement?
A newly designed procurement process to select a preferred Contractor is nearing completion as it is anticipated that the Development Agreement with that preferred contractor will be in place by early June. The contents of that Development Agreement will then be presented to the new City Council elected in May’s Local Elections to be assessed for compliance with the January 2017 decision.
Upon the reaching of a Development Agreement, the preferred contractor will then have NO MORE THAN 6 months to apply for planning permission. After permission has been granted, the preferred contractor will have to begin works on site within ONE MONTH of that permission being approved. Given the number of new homes to be built, it is expected that it will take a number of years to complete the full redevelopment of O’Devaney Gardens.
If you have any questions or queries arising from the details provided, please get in touch with me at RayMcAdam@gmail.com and I will endeavour to answer those enquiries as best I can.
VACANT INFIRMARY ROAD LANDS
As you may be aware, the former Department of Defence lands on Infirmary Road that stretch between Montpelier Hill and Montpelier Gardens are in the ownership of Dublin City Council. In recent months, as a Chair of the O’Devaney Gardens Community Consultative Forum, I have been working with local Councillors and officials to ensure these lands are used for community and recreational facilities as an effective third phase of the O’Devaney Gardens redevelopment project. Some of the buildings on the former Department of Defence lands are included on the Record of Protected Structure which will restrict what development can be provided. Personally, I want to see these buildings being refurbished and retained but in order to best determine how that can be done, Dublin City Council has agreed to my request to examine the upper half of the site through an Outline Development Study. When that is completed, and should I be re-elected as your LOCAL Councillor, I will work to undertake an initial public consultation to secure your feedback and views over the summer. Separately, I can also confirm that the City Council is finalizing a proposal to build 38 apartments on the Montpelier Hill end of the site. While this has been suggested for quite some time by Dublin City Council, I hope these plans can be brought to Councillors soon.
STANLEY STREET FIRE DEPOT LANDS – REDEVELOPMENT UPDATE
When I called to homes across Stoneybatter in recent weeks, numerous householders sought an update on the possible redevelopment of the Stanley Street Fire Depot site by Dublin City Council. In order to better inform householders, I sought an update from the Chief Executive as to:
• Whether the Council had yet undertake the preparation of site specific master plan?
• The number of homes that may be delivered and
• A timeline for the completion of the entire redevelopment project.
Officials have since responded to my enquiries, advising that:
• These lands are currently zoned Z5, which is a mixed use zoning status on lands which comprises an area of 1.15 hectares.
• The Council is now seeking to advance a redevelopment of mixed tenure housing.
• A commercial component is also being envisaged by the Council in line with the Z5 zoning status.
• While the City Council indicated previously that 270 homes would be provided, no such figure has been provided in the latest update I sought.
• Site specific development briefs will be prepared from May 2019 onwards.
I hope this information is of assistance to you. However, if you require any additional information or further clarification, please come back to me at RayMcAdam@gmail.com and I will endeavour to secure those details for you.
OXMANTOWN ROAD TRAFFIC IMPROVEMENT SCHEME – NEXT STEPS
Thanks to all the Oxmantown Road householders and Stoneybatter residents who shared their feedback with me on the draft Oxmantown Road Traffic Improvement Scheme. Overall, the response has been very positive, though understandably, some questions and queries arising from aspects of the proposed scheme have been raised. I shared your feedback and sought clarification on the issues raised with the North Inner City Traffic Engineer at the March meeting of the North Inner City Area Committee. As with the Arbour Hill Traffic Improvement Scheme, the City Council Engineers will examine the questions put by householders and clarify issues raised before advancing to a more detailed design of the scheme. When that information including visuals of the proposed measures is available to me, I will share those details with Oxmantown Road residents and Stoneybatter householders to gauge further views before the City Council will seek to implement the Improvement Scheme and select a contractor to carry out the works. Again, if you have any questions or queries arising from the above information, please come back to me at RayMcAdam@gmail.com.
FUNDING INCREASED FOR HOUSING ADAPTATION GRANTS
€8,456,552 has been made available by our Fine Gael-led Government to support home adaptations for older people and those with disability and mobility issues, locally. The funding, which has been increased by more than 12%, will enable older people and people with disabilities to remain living independently in their own homes for longer and will also facilitate early return from hospital. Grants of up to €30,000 are available to assist people with a disability in carrying out necessary works to make a house more suitable for their needs, up to €8,000 to assist older people living in poor housing conditions to have necessary repairs or improvements carried out and up to €6,000 for mobility aids to address mobility problems for a member of the household. If you want or need any application form for any of these grants, please contact me at RayMcAdam@gmail.com.
ARE YOU INTERESTED IN TAKING PART IN A CONSTRUCTION SKILLS COURSE?
The Construction Skills Course operated by the Eastside and Docklands Local Employment Service runs several times a year and each course lasts for three weeks. The central modules include:
• Health and Safety in the workplace
• Site Maintenance
• Brick Laying
Eastside and Docklands Local Employment Services (EDLES) works with a number of well-known industry partners to place the graduates in to full-time employment upon their successful completion of the course. To date, EDLES has a 75% placement rate for all successful graduates. If you are interested in training in the construction sector, contact Jim Hargis, Employment Services Manager, on 01-6771930.
40-41 STONEYBATTER DEVELOPMENT
Planning permission was granted approximately 18 months ago by Dublin City Council and An Bord Pleanala for the construction of 23 apartments on the vacant site at 40-41 Stoneybatter. The North Inner City Area Committee was recently advised at our March meeting recently that the development will be delivered through an Enhanced Leasing Scheme through the Housing Agency. The development will be named Colmcille House and will be a mixed sized complex. This naming proposal was approved by the North Inner City Area Committee as the Colmcille branch of Cumann na mBan is being commemorated. Colmcille Hall (now 5 Blackhall Place) was the headquarters of Cumann na mBan and the Gaelic League for our area.