More than 900 Wicklow homes built without enough schools, water, transport and drainage, housing expert claims
More than 900 houses built in Wicklow last year were constructed without enough schools, water, transport and drainage, a leading housing expert from UCD has said.
Architect Orla Hegarty says 30pc of all new estates – more than 3,800 houses – built in 2019 are located in seven Dublin commuter towns forcing people into long commutes into the city.
As a result, this is creating immediate and future social, economic and environmental costs that are not being taken into account.
The towns Ms Hegarty refers to are:
- 451 houses in Wicklow Town
- 465 in Greystones
- 829 in Naas, Co Kildare
- 429 in Dunsaughlin, Co Meath
- 659 in Celbridge, Co Kildare
- 494 in Navan, Co Meath
- 539 in Drogheda, Co Louth
“So 3,866 new homes, over 10,000 people, are going into areas without adequate infrastructure, schools, water, drainage, transport,” she said.
And objectors to these massive estates should not be branded as Nimbys (not in my back yard) objectors, she added.
“People in these towns who raise legitimate concerns about this are not Nimbys. These are real issues for existing communities, impacting on quality of life, access to services, congestion etc. This is why ‘planning’ is so important,” she claims.
Ms Hegarty was responding to figures released by the Central Statistics Office which reveal that that 21,000 homes were built last year.
“People are moving for ‘affordability’ and ‘space’, resulting in long commutes, road congestion, long childcare hours, lack of amenities, remoteness from family/friends and bigger carbon footprint for life,” she wrote.
Ms Hegarty added that while buyers can afford the new houses, they come at a massive cost to the State through new infrastructure, schools, services, public transport.
Just 909 housing units – just 5% – were constructed in Dublin city last year and that most of that is small apartments which is sold to build-to-rent investors who are charging up to €2,000 a month for two-bed units.
Last month, WicklowNow.ie reported how Cairn Homes planned to build 426 houses in the Greystones area, while 46 more homes, by a different builder, are to be constructed in Wicklow Town.