Housing co-op grants 19 families new homes
Nineteen families were provided with new homes last week, marking the end of up to nine years of waiting on the Wexford County Council Housing list.
The houses were received through a housing co-operative which is the first ever to take place in the south east.
Operated by NABCO, Ireland's co-operative housing provider, Wexford County Council and NAMA, it granted new homes to families in the Parkton Mews estate in Enniscorthy.
Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform, Brendan Howlin TD officially opened the co-operative at a special ceremony on Friday.
Representing Wexford County Council was Vice Chairman for Enniscorthy Municipal District, Cllr James Browne, who welcomed the initiative in his opening remarks.
'These new homes are of the first quality and we are delighted that they have been made available to local families on the Wexford housing list,' he said.
The houses are part of a previously unfinished estate which was completed through a partnership between NABCO and NAMA's special purpose vehicle for social housing, NARPS. Under an agreement with these bodies, the homes will be leased for 20 years. Families have been provided with a mix of properties, ranging from small apartments to three bedroom homes which all have been fully completed with a NABCO investment of €300,000. The residents will share a managed open space with other homeowners in Parkton Mews, along with an equal say in the running of the estate.
The partnership between the two agencies has been a success to date, having delivered 58 homes to families in Cork, Waterford and Dublin in recent years. The Enniscorthy project is the latest in their series of partnerships. Speaking at the opening, NABCO CEO Kieron Brennan addressed the wider purpose of the scheme.
'NABCO'S strategy is to respond to the national housing crisis by growing across the country in response to local need,' he said. 'Significant growth across Leinster is a key aim for us and we are delighted to be starting in County Wexford.'
NAMA Chief Executive Brendan McDonagh said that the opening of the houses was a good example of the work that has been done so far.
Minister Howlin also paid a warm welcome to the Enniscorthy houses in his speech, before setting his sights on the future.
'This government's Social Housing Strategy commits to delivering 35,000 new homes for social housing over the period to 2020.
'In Budget 2016 the Government increased the allocation for social housing by €125 mn to €811 mn, which demonstrates the priority that the Government places on social housing and homelessness,' said Minister Howlin, who added that the combination of the government and local authority funding will allow targets to be met.