Twenty families can look forward to a fresh start next year after the sod was turned on a new housing scheme at Avondale Heights, Rathdrum, on Monday (September 18th).
The ceremony was performed by the Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government, Mr Eoghan Murphy TD, together with the Cathaoirleach of Wicklow County Council, Cllr Edward Timmons, and Chief Executive, Mr Frank Curran.
Welcoming the development, the Minister said: “Today heralds the visible start of a vigorous programme of development by Wicklow County Council which will provide accommodation for over 185 households on the Council’s social housing list over the next two years.
“The Council currently has 14 construction schemes at various stages of planning and funding of over €43.4m has been sanctioned by the Department for these schemes. This is in addition to two projects which will provide for persons with special needs and the acquisition of a property in Greystones which will meet the needs of a further 30 housing applicants, for which funding of €3.84m is available.
“The development of this 20-house scheme is another good news story for Wicklow and I wish to commend the elected members and the Chief Executive for their support and commitment to this project and the development programme.”
The Cathaoirleach, Cllr Edward Timmins, acknowledged the assistance and support of the Minister and his Department saying: “Without whose help we wouldn’t be investing the money that we are currently investing in the Wicklow community”.
He reiterated that “this development of 20 houses is part of over 185 new housing units that Wicklow County Council have in the pipeline, at various stages of approval. We are looking to bring these developments forward as quickly as possible with the assistance of the Department.”
Mr Frank Curran, Chief Executive, Wicklow County council, welcomed the commencement of the development, stating that he wanted to “publicly acknowledge the valued assistance we had from the Minister’s Department at every stage of this process.”
He noted that “other streams of delivering new units to address the Housing crisis are well advanced, through Part V units on new developments and units being delivered in partnership with Approved Housing Bodies”. Mr Curran acknowledged the expertise and commitment of the Director of Housing & Corporate Estate, Joe Lane and each member of his project team, in progressing the development programme and in bringing this scheme to fruition.”
Also in attendance were Minister for Health, Mr Simon Harris TD; Minister of State, Mr Andrew Doyle TD and Deputy John Brady.
The main contractors for the 20-unit scheme are QMac and the expected completion date is September 2018.