Minister Eoghan Murphy officially opens new Social Housing Schemes in Donegal

Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government Eoghan Murphy TD visited Donegal today (11 January) to officially open four new social housing schemes and turn the sod on two new social housing developments representing an overall investment of almost €23m in Social Housing provision in Donegal under the Rebuilding Ireland Programme.

Speaking at the official opening the Minister said,” I am delighted to be here today in Donegal to see first-hand the fine work the Council are doing in the delivery of new social homes through their own construction programme and in partnership with both private developers through turnkey scheme and with Approved Housing Bodies. I will be turning the sod on two construction schemes and will also be officially opening a further four social housing schemes at various locations across the county. In all there are 115 new homes being delivered which will provide high quality homes to cater for the different housing demands arising in Donegal, they will be, without doubt, a very welcome addition to the social housing stock in Donegal. These schemes show what Donegal County Council, and local authorities are capable of doing in delivering high quality housing through the funding support available under Rebuilding Ireland.”

Minister Murphy started his visit in Donegal Town this morning where he turned the sod on a new development that will see 34 new social housing homes constructed representing an                                                                                                                            investment of €5.3 million.  This development will incorporate 24 social housing homes and two group homes and is being delivered in conjunction with Oaklee Housing Association and the HSE.

In Stranorlar  the Minister officially opened the new Gleann na Greine housing estate at Mullindrait, Stranorlar which Donegal County Council acquired recently from Longmarsh Developments Ltd.  The development includes 18 three bedroom and 3 four bedroom houses and is now home to 82 individuals.

The new estates at Castlepark in Newtowncunningham and An Ceapagh in Manorcunningham were also officially opened by Minister Murphy.  The new development at Castlepark consists of 4 two bed and 3 three bed homes while the new development at An Ceapagh consists of 4 two bed and 4 three bed homes. .  The new homes at An Ceapagh are located on a beautiful site with stunning views over the surrounding countryside.

The Minister also officially opened phase 1 of the new Leitir Beag estate at Crievesmith Letterkenny which the Council acquired from George Doherty Construction (IrlLtd) consisting of 16 homes with a further 18 homes due for completion this year.

The day concluded with the turning of the sod at a new site at Long Lane in Letterkenny where the construction of 29 homes, consisting of 12 two bed, 15 three bed and 2 four bed homes at a cost of just over €6 million, will commence in the next few months and where the appointment of a contractor is imminent.

“This is just the beginning of Donegal County Council’s  ambitious Social Housing Programme” explains Joe Peoples Director of Housing, Corporate and Cultural Services with Donegal County Council.

“The Councils Housing Construction Programme is projected to deliver 298 social housing units over the next two to three years representing an investment in the region of almost €53 million.  This programme includes projects currently at design stage in Buncrana, Raphoe, Malin, St.Johnston, Ramelton, Dunfanaghy, Bundoran and Letterkenny as well as a scheme being constructed in Killybegs.”

Alongside the Housing Construction Programme the Council has purchased 208 properties under the Single House Acquisition Programme since 2015 representing an investment of over €25 million with more acquisitions expected in the coming year.

In addition the Councils new Turnkey Acquisition programme is anticipated to deliver 300 to 400 social housing units in towns and villages across Donegal over the next few years.

Speaking today Cathaoirleach of Donegal County Council Cllr. Seamus O’Domhnaill acknowledged the work being done by Donegal County Council’s Housing Directorate as part of the Councils Social Housing Programme.

“This is an extensive programme of work and I am delighted to be here today to see the first housing schemes under this programme being officially opened.  Under this programme Donegal County Council is planning to build 298 social housing units representing an investment in the region of almost €53 million.  In addition to this the Council is pursuing an ambitious Turnkey Acquisition programme which has the potential to deliver a substantial number of high quality houses in towns across the county over the next few years.   This, along with the acquisition of single units, the construction of specific instance or one-off houses and the Buy and Renew Initiative, will go a long way to meeting housing demands in Donegal in the years ahead.”

Chief Executive of Donegal County Council Seamus Neely says that the Council is committed to providing high quality housing solutions for the people of Donegal and the housing schemes being officially opened today are a great example of the excellent standard of housing being made available for families and individuals across the county.

“We have been ambitious in our approach to addressing the housing challenges that many families and individuals have been facing in Donegal.  At the heart of these homes are the tenants that occupy them and all our houses have been designed with this in mind.  All units are highly energy efficient, with low running costs, meeting the specific needs and requirements of tenants where necessary and are delivered to high specifications and standards in line with the building regulations.  We are committed to meeting the targets and objectives set out in Rebuilding Ireland and continue to work closely with the Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government as the main funder of our social housing programme.”