Working group set up for development of intergenerational housing scheme

By Maurice Garvey

A WORKING group has been set up to assist the development of an intergenerational housing scheme of 176 units in Ballyfermot.

The 3.8 acre greenfield site on Sarsfield Road, has been leased to The Sons of Divine Providence (TSDP) on a 250 year lease (of which 200 years remain), and Dublin City Council together with TSDP are interested in developing it for social housing.

Sons of Divine Providence 05 1

The site on Sarsfield Road planned for the housing scheme

According to a city council architects report, the Sarsfield Working Group (SWG) has been set up to provide guidance and advice on the project.

Following community consultations, a proposal for an intergenerational housing scheme has been developed, comprising a dedicated older person’s block, as part of a greater intergenerational scheme with a high number of one beds.

The proposal is based on 100 per cent universal design standards, with flexibility achieved through alternative dwelling types.

The whole site is to be developed at the same time, involving one building project, rather than being broken into phases.

The report says there should be a masterplan for the overall site.

A proposal was first put forward by the Sons in 2014, which supported by local councillors, contained plans to build 250 elderly housing units at a 5.5 acre site on Sarsfield Road.

Two years ago, there was another proposal between Orione Care - the working title for the Sons who have been delivering services from its site in lower Ballyfermot since 1970 - and Dublin City Council for 160 social housing units.

According to the architect’s report, the development contains a “larger number of one-bed apartments than usual, in order to reflect the demand/need for these types of housing units from people on the housing lists”.

The larger number of one-bed apartments will provide “more choice to older people who may wish to be housed in the intergenerational general housing blocks rather than in the block which is being exclusively reserved for older people.”

A number of options are outlined in the report, which says there is “plenty of local demand” for larger family needs, and this could include three-bed duplexes at ground level, which can house up to 6 people.

Proposals also include four person/three-bed apartments.

Three options are listed for the delivery of the project, which could cost up to €60m to complete, with the average unit costing between €326k to €341k.

The report says aspiration for 100 per cent of units to be to Universal Design is difficult for the Department of Housing to support. It says the Dept favour the flexible dwelling option, which provides about 50 per cent Universal Design.

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