Deputy Willie Penrose
Local authorities in the Midlands are being encouraged to apply to a special €10m fund set up by Government to clean up any unfinished housing estates or developments which have not been addressed to date.
Westmeath Labour TD Willie Penrose is advising councils to submit funding proposals to the Department of the Environment before the end of February, outlining the issues facing the most problematic estates and detailing funding requirements.
“We still have a problem with a number of unfinished housing estates in Westmeath and Longford but thankfully my colleague, Labour Housing Minister Jan O’Sullivan, secured a special fund of €10 million in the Budget, with a view to specifically tackling the most problematic unfinished developments," said Deputy Penrose.
“The fund is specially designed to address deficiencies in public infrastructure such as roads, footpaths, public lighting and open spaces. It is envisaged that by addressing these problems, we will unlock the potential for developers and funders to invest additional capital to complete the housing element of the development.
"Many of the developments that require this type of investment are currently in limbo and inactive, as the public infrastructure deficit deters any potential buyers from expressing an interest in the estate.
“Some good progress has been made on this issue to date but this is a critical step. The closing date for the applications is February 28th and I am encouraging Longford County Council and Westmeath County Council to apply to the Department of the Environment as soon as possible for funding, so we can press on with making real progress in this area."