GROUND has been broken and work has begun on a 16 social housing unit development in Kilmacthomas, which under current Government restrictions can still continue.
The need for social housing stock nationally and particularly in rural towns and villages is something Cllr. Ger Barron and Local Area Representative Michael Murphy are acutely aware of.
Cllr Barron said, “It is fantastic to see works being started on the new social housing development in Kilmacthomas. This project is one I have worked on for many years given the constant need in our communities to increase housing supply.” Cllr Barron, along with some of his other Comeragh councillor colleagues, contributed to this development around ensuring that the entrance would be out onto the old N25 which he said is a much “more suitable entrance that that previously proposed for future residents and surrounding current developments”. “The location of the entrance was of particular importance in order to ensure maximised road safety for the residents of this new development and other road users,” said Cllr Barron.
Labour Local Area Rep and Housing Support Worker Michael Murphy recently called for an increase in housing stock for rural villages and towns. Michael went on to say that, “We are regularly contacted by people in extremely challenging housing situations in the Comeragh Area. The usual response is for applicants to ensure they are on the housing/transfer list and then bid on properties on choice based lettings… The problem is, properties rarely come up for people to express an interest in. The supply is simply not there. The private rented market has priced many people out and families across the area are left in extremely precarious situations. Whilst the breaking of ground for the new Kilmacthomas Social Housing development is incredibly positive and welcomed, it is only the tip of the iceberg.”
Both representatives are continuing to campaign for increased social housing funding which they believe to be fundamental in ending the homeless crisis in Ireland.
Cllr Barron said, “We need to build houses. We cannot continue with limited market interventions and expect the market to in turn solve the problem. This has not worked and it wont work. Labour, as a party of action throughout history, always built social housing which contributed to the easing of the housing crisis in the 60s. Many of these homes have gone full circle and end up for sale on the private market in today’s current climate after families buying them outright with various affordable council mortgage initiatives. We need to explore this again.”
Work continues with the housing development in Kilmacthomas with an expected timeline of completion in mid 2022.