City housing crisis to take '289 years' to deal with at current rate claims Farrell

Fourteen social housing units planned for 2015 unlikely to be built until 2016

Sinn Féin Galway City East Councillor Mairéad Farrell.

Sinn Féin Galway City East Councillor Mairéad Farrell.

The Government’s plan to build 14 social housing units in Galway in 2015 has been condemned as "a mere drop in the ocean" by Sinn Féin's Mairéad Farrell, who added that at such a rate, it will take "289 years to meet the needs" of the city's housing waiting list.

At Monday’s council meeting, Cllr Farrell welcomed the building of the houses in the Ballymoneen Road area, but said the Government’s allocation shows "a complete lack of understanding of the extent of the city’s housing crisis", with 4,041 families on the social housing waiting list.

"If the Government continued to build 14 houses every year, it would take 289 years to meet the needs of the list," she said. "Although I may be the youngest councillor, even I don’t expect to be around to see that dream realised."

Cllr Farrell said she "cannot understand" why only 14 houses are being built when there is planning for 69 houses at that location, and that those plans are near completion. She said it was also "worrying" that the construction of the houses has not yet begun, and that this will result in the units not being completed until 2016 - a further delay.

"The Government is continuously telling us that there is a recovery, that there is money available to tackle the crisis, but so far the Government have proven all talk and no action," she said. "We are in the midst of a major housing crisis in Galway which must be tackled immediately; the people of Galway can wait no longer."

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