Dublin City Council have come under attack for a U-Turn tonight (Monday), in which council officials acknowledged that the ‘affordable’ housing component of their housing development plans will require a full giveaway of land to private developers.

Cllr. Éilis Ryan (Workers’ Party) responded to the comments made by city council Deputy CEO Brendan Kenny saying:
“The Workers’ Party consistently warned that, under the private developer-led Housing Land Initiative, the only way that we would get any affordable housing on these sites would be by giving the land away to developers. For this reason, we campaigned against the Initiative, and proposed repeatedly that the council should instead develop its land itself.

“But the city’s chief executive, and the councillors who voted the Land Initiative through, repeatedly insisted that there would be “no giveaway” of land to developers. Now they have done a complete u-turn on this matter.”

Cllr. Ryan continued:
“Repeatedly, the major justification we have heard for the private sector Housing Land Initiative has been the need to deliver mixed income housing. Now, it appears that even to deliver a tiny percentage of ‘affordable’ housing on our own, publicly-owned land, we will have to give it away, free gratis and for nothing, to private developers.”

The Workers’ Party councillor concluded:
“It is of huge significance that, in a letter to An Taoiseach today, Sinn Féin, who originally supported the Land Initiative, are now calling for the Land Initiative to be reviewed.

“What this U-Turn shows, is that even its supporters now know that the Housing Land Initiative has failed. It’s not delivering affordable housing – it’s not even delivering expensive housing. It should be abandoned in favour of council-led, 100% mixed income public housing.”