Major regeneration project gets underway
Clúid Housing has begun a €21 million redevelopment of St. Mary’s Mansions flat complex in Dublin’s North East inner city. Former and future residents of the social housing scheme joined Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government, Eoghan Murphy TD and Minister for Finance and Public Expenditure & Reform, Paschal Donohoe TD at a photocall to mark the beginning of this highly anticipated regeneration project.
The flat complex was built by Dublin Corporation nearly 70 years ago and is in need of total refurbishment to bring it up to current standards. The regeneration works are scheduled for completion in mid-2019 and, when complete, will provide high quality social housing to 80 local families and single people. The works will include the addition of two new floors and will be laid out as 1, 2, 3 and 4 bedroom apartments and duplexes.
€21 million investment
The regeneration will cost just over €21 million. Clúid will finance the project through a combination of loans from the Housing Finance Agency (HFA), European Investment Bank (EIB) and financial support from the Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government.
Clúid’s New Business Director, Fiona Cormican commented: “Clúid Housing is absolutely delighted to see this regeneration project get underway. The redevelopment of St. Mary’s Mansions will provide much needed social housing for local people and it is going to have a phenomenal impact on the local community.”
The project is being delivered through a partnership between Clúid and Dublin City Council, Dublin North East Inner City, the European Investment Bank, Ganson, the Housing Finance Agency, Inner City Organisations Network (ICON) and Rebuilding Ireland.
Minister for Housing Eoghan Murphy TD commented: “The regeneration of St. Mary’s Mansions is a wonderful example of partnership. My Department is providing funding of €6.4 million and I am looking forward to seeing the results of this innovative collaboration between Rebuilding Ireland, Clúid Housing and Dublin City Council. This redevelopment will provide much needed social housing for the North East Inner City area. The project will provide a safe, comfortable home for all residents whilst communal features such as the central courtyard and community room will help build upon the existing community spirit in the area.”
Focus on North East inner city
The regeneration of St. Mary’s Mansions is the first major redevelopment in the area following the publication of the Mulvey report in 2016 which highlighted the need for action to make the North East inner city area a safe, attractive and vibrant living and working environment for the community and its families with opportunities for all to lead full lives.
Local TD, Minister Paschal Donohoe commented: “St Mary’s Mansions is home to a thriving Dublin inner city community but, like many others, has faced the challenge of anti-social behaviour over the years. This redevelopment signals a new chapter in the St. Mary’s Mansions’ story, which I have no doubt will be as community focused as it has been down through the years. The work undertaken by the Department of Housing, in conjunction with Clúid Housing and Dublin City Council, is to be strongly commended.”
Sustainability and innovative design
Building on the strong sense of community spirit in the area, the redesign of St. Mary’s Mansions focused on the input of existing and new residents and a number of key features were specifically included to enhance overall quality of life. These include communal social and play areas, a community room and socially aware landscaping. At the heart of the regenerated St. Mary’s Mansions will be a central courtyard designed to support community activities.
Former St. Mary’s Mansions resident Elsie Campion, who lives in Clúid’s nearby Killarney Court scheme said: “The whole community is thrilled to see this going ahead! It’ll make a huge difference to the area.”
Once complete, the BER (Building Energy Rating) of each apartment will be an impressive A3. Combined with an affordable rent, the reduced fuel costs will help to combat fuel poverty among tenants. Solar electricity will supplement demand across the development, further reducing living costs for residents. Each apartment will have flexible, thermostatically controlled heating with easy to operate intelligent controls. Cutting-edge insulation technology will eliminate heat loss to create super-efficient homes. A high efficiency gas fired centralised heating system will provide central heating and hot water on demand via monitored heat-units in each home.
Clúid is working in partnership with Dublin City Council to ensure the redevelopment makes full use of local employment and training initiatives, particularly during the construction phase. Upon completion, the scheme will be accessed by a newly created entrance on Gloucester Place Lower. It is envisioned this will improve security and reanimate the existing underused space. There will be increased car and bike parking facilities and a secure, easily maintained bin store. New lift and stair cores will improve access for all residents.