5.3 Challenges

It is important that the city has housing that is affordable and attractive to all who want to live in the city, including: high quality spacious housing units with good levels of amenity in terms of green open space, daylight and sunlight; adaptable and flexible units that readily provide for changing needs over time including the needs of families with children; high-quality, well-designed communal areas; good property management; agreed phasing of larger developments to ensure appropriate infrastructure is provided in tandem with residential development; and sustainable building designs which are energy efficient and utilise renewable energy sources.

The development plan includes a socially inclusive housing strategy for the existing and future population of the city including the needs of those requiring social housing. The housing strategy indicates that: there is a good distribution of zoned and serviced land in Dublin which at 440 hectares has the capacity to meet the regional population target; the population of Dublin city is projected to increase by 59,038 people between 2015 and 2022; there is a need to construct 4,215 units each year over the lifetime of the strategy to meet this target; and it will be necessary to set aside 10% for social housing as permitted under Part V of the Planning and Developments Act 2000 (as amended). The complete housing strategy is contained in the development plan appendices (see Appendix 2A).

Housing completions in Dublin city fell below 600 units per year between 2011 and 2013, which is the lowest level of output in 20 years, due to a range of issues affecting the housing market, including: the cost of land, the cost of financing, and the difference between the cost of delivering housing and the sale price.

There is a pressing need to facilitate a significant increase in housing output whilst creating high-quality accommodation to address a range of housing issues, including homelessness. In this regard, the City Council will engage in active land management, relax standards to facilitate residential development on upper floors where appropriate, and to recognise and facilitate, where appropriate, distinct components which are developing within the housing market such as: professionally managed private rental, approved housing bodies, student accommodation, and housing for older people.