Carolyn Moore

Green Party Councillor for Kimmage Rathmines

Housing: My Dublin Inquirer voter guide response

Q: How would you help get more housing built in the city – especially social and affordable housing?

So many of the frustrations people have with living in Dublin are caused or exacerbated by the housing crisis – the cost, the stress and the uncertainty of renting and the desperation people feel that their hope of owning a home is slipping away.

As a councillor I’ve always tried to make constructive contributions to planning applications in Kimmage-Rathmines, acknowledging that the housing crisis is not just one of supply but of affordability. We need to be building communities, not just constructing units for profit, and I’ve worked with local residents to try and secure the best outcomes for their community where new developments are concerned.

I’m committed to doing all I can to help address the housing crisis, and I believe the cost rental model of housing – which is a cornerstone of Green Party housing policy – offers a sustainable, flexible and community-oriented solution. Housing is a right, not a commodity and cost rental (aka ‘the Vienna Model’ of housing) involves constructing affordable rental properties on public land, only charging the cost of construction over the lifetime of the property and thereby removing the profit motive. Delivered at scale it would drive down rents and the security of tenure it offers would take some of the pressure off the housing market. In Dublin we should be working with approved housing bodies and the land development agency to ensure cost rental makes up a sizeable chunk of the social and affordable housing we’re delivering, building in ideas like life-cycle housing so that people can stay settled in their community through different life stages.

Existing properties also offer a sustainable and efficient way to increase housing supply. The council needs to improve the turnover time for bringing empty social homes back into use and play an active role in turning vacant and derelict properties into homes. I want to see more resources allocated to identifying and reclaiming vacant or derelict properties, I want to see a proper crackdown on illegal full-time Air BnBs, and a strategy to increase over the shop living opportunities. The Green Party has supported the introduction of a scheme to repurpose space above shops for residential use, and we are making this a reality through the existing Croí Connaithe Scheme.

Ultimately the individual needs within the housing crisis are varied and require a range of solutions designed to bring a sustainable supply of mixed accommodation options on stream.