Chapter 5: Quality housing and sustainable neighbourhoods

Oscailtedate_range25 Sam, 2021, 12:00am - 14 Fea, 2022, 4:30pm

5.1      Introduction

National and regional policy reinforces the need for ‘healthy placemaking’ and the delivery of well-designed, affordable, adaptable, infill and brownfield development close to existing services and facilities. Such development should be supported by universal design and improved urban amenities, including public spaces and parks, social and community infrastructure, as well as enhanced permeability, accessibility and connectivity.

Creating and maintaining successful urban neighbourhoods to underpin sustainable communities requires the efficient use of land at densities which ensure the viability of a range of facilities, amenities, services and good public transport connections. All of these components should be set within a high quality built environment in order to enhance liveability and create a good quality of life for all. The provision of affordable, accessible, quality homes and sustainable community infrastructure which meets the needs of the city’s population and which contribute to the making of good, connected neighbourhoods is a key priority of the development plan. It is acknowledged that quality neighbourhoods are responsive to the needs of local communities, play an important role in quality of life factors and foster a wider sense of community and active citizenship.

5.2      Achievements

The City Council encourages residential development through its proactive land management policies and planning frameworks. In the period since the adoption of the 2016 Plan, the city has seen a significant increase in the delivery of new housing with 7,078 dwellings completed in the Dublin City Council area between 2016 and mid-2020. In addition, since 2015, over 7,500 public housing units have been delivered with another 11,491 units currently in the pipeline. The Council has been successful in planning for new neighbourhoods and creating new communities at Ashtown-Pelletstown and Clongriffin-Belmayne in the city’s northern suburbs and in North Lotts and Grand Canal Dock, through regeneration of the city’s historic docklands area.

The City Council plays a key role in funding, delivering and running community facilities and services across the city. It provides a broad range of indoor and outdoor community amenities including over 1,500 hectares of parks, over a 100 children’s playgrounds and over 20 public libraries. It invests every year in new social infrastructure and upgrades and improves a wide range of existing social infrastructure through capital projects including public realm upgrades, sports facility refurbishments and enhancements to public parks.

The Council also implements a wide range of strategies relating to disability, ageing and integration and has statutory responsibilities relating to disability, travellers and people experiencing exclusion. The Council have delivered a number of community projects on its publicly owned lands including the development of the new Le Fanu skate/bike park in Ballyfermot, a purpose-built public park at Weaver Square in the Liberties, a community city farm at St. Anne’s Park, Raheny and the refurbishment of Kevin Street Library in Dublin 8.

The Council recently developed and launched its innovative Culture Near You tool, an online GIS-based map of culture in Dublin City that will enable a more robust and evidence-based approach to decision-making on the use and roll-out of new social and community infrastructure in the city in the future.

The Council has been pioneering in the area of civic engagement and active citizenship, creating the Public Participation Network and Your Dublin Your Voice opinion panel as a way to engage citizens in local decision making, facilitating them to take a more active role in influencing Council plans and policies.

5.3      Challenges

With significant population growth forecast, Dublin City must consider how best to plan for new and growing communities and an increasingly diverse as well as ageing population. It is important that the city has adequate social and affordable housing that is attractive to all. There is a necessity to provide high quality, appropriately managed, sustainable, adaptable housing units with good levels of amenity that readily provide for changing needs over time including the needs of families with children, older people and disabled persons.

The development plan includes a socially inclusive housing strategy for the existing and future population of the city including the needs of those that require social housing. The Housing Strategy (Appendix 1) indicates that there is sufficient, well-serviced land to meet the housing targets set out in the Core Strategy. There remains however, ongoing challenges in terms of housing delivery in the city. There is a pressing need to facilitate a significant increase in affordable housing output whilst creating high quality accommodation to address a range of housing issues including homelessness.

There is also a need to ensure that there is a corresponding level of social and community infrastructure provision to match the rate of population growth planned for Dublin city over the plan period. This will require the creation of sustainable communities and compact neighbourhoods that are well served by social infrastructure at a neighbourhood level. The co-ordinated provision of a range of facilities and services to cater for all, such as schools, care centres, cultural and community spaces, will require an inter-agency response to ensure the timely provision of such social infrastructure. It will also be essential to ensure that community facilities and services between neighbourhoods and communities are optimised throughout the city.

5.4      The Strategic Approach

The delivery of quality homes and sustainable communities in the compact city is a key issue for our citizens and ensuring that Dublin remains competitive as a place to live and invest in. The approach is to build on the policies of the last development plan and implement the Core Strategy by:

  • Supporting the Metropolitan Area Strategic Plan (MASP) which seeks the sustainable development of the Dublin Metropolitan Area.
  • Providing for the right quantity of appropriate housing in the right locations that are accessible and affordable for all residents of the city through the implementation and delivery of the Housing Strategy.
  • Completion and implementation of approved Local Area Plans (LAPs) and Strategic Development Zones (SDZs), in addition to Strategic Development and Regeneration Areas (SDRAs) and Key Urban Villages (KUVs), to drive the delivery of sustainable, dynamic urban centres, in line with the settlement strategy.
  • Delivering good quality housing to cater for diverse housing needs - mix of tenures and typologies to meet people's full lifecycle and avoidance of large areas of mono use developments.
  • Promote and facilitate the provision of the 15-minute city which provides for sustainable urban neighbourhoods and villages through healthy placemaking and the delivery of high quality housing served by local services.
  • Engaging in active land management to promote regeneration including utilising the Vacant Sites Register, the Dublin Housing Task Force and Dublin City’s Regeneration Programme.
  • Inter-departmental Council collaboration to actively seek funding for housing and social infrastructure from national and European funding including LIHAF, URDF and the Serviced Sites Fund.
  • In development management, ensuring that applications for significant large new developments are accompanied by an audit of community infrastructure and an implementation and phasing programme in relation to community infrastructure, so that facilities identified as needed are provided in a timely and co-ordinated fashion.

5.5      Policies and Objectives

5.5.1  National and Regional Policy Context and the Housing Strategy

The National Planning Framework (NPF) and the Regional Spatial Economic Strategy (RSES) emphasise the importance of achieving compact sustainable growth and accelerated housing delivery while promoting people’s quality of life through ‘healthy placemaking’. It is a National Policy Objective (NPO 4) to “ensure the creation of attractive, liveable, well designed, high quality urban places that are home to diverse and integrated communities that enjoy a high quality of life and well-being”.

The NPF focuses on the link between public health/ community wellbeing and the physical design of the environment, recognising that health can be influenced by decisions on land use and the layout of the built environment.

The 2020 Programme for Government recognises the need to plan to meet the future accommodation and healthcare needs of our diverse, ageing population by expanding the range of health and social care services in the community and putting in place healthcare supports and housing options for older persons as part of the development plan.

Fostering sustainable communities is also an objective of the government’s ‘Housing for All - a New Housing Plan for Ireland’ (2021), through government reforms of Part V and developing new guidance on achieving the most appropriate tenure mix within communities and new guidelines for Local and Economic Community Plans.

The Department of Housing, Local Government and Heritage (DHLGH) has published several guidelines relating to the government’s vision for housing and the promotion of sustainable neighbourhoods and communities, including: ‘Quality Housing for Sustainable Communities – Best Practice Guidelines for Delivering Homes Sustaining Communities’ (2007), ‘Sustainable Urban Housing: Design Standards for New Apartments’ (2020), ‘Sustainable Residential Development in Urban Areas’ and the accompanying ‘Urban Design Manual: A Best Practice Guide’ (2009) and the Design Manual for Urban Roads and Streets’ (DMURS)(2019). The development plan seeks to build upon and enhance the provisions of these guidelines.

The Dublin City Council Housing Strategy contained in Appendix 1 addresses many issues associated with housing in the city, including housing need, the amount of serviced and zoned land required to meet projected housing need, the need for housing units of different types and sizes, improving social mix, and catering for those with particular needs including older people, the Traveller community, homeless people and people with disabilities. The NPF includes the requirement to prepare a Housing Needs Demand Assessment (HNDA) to inform housing policies, housing strategies and associated land use zoning policies as well as assisting in determining where new policy areas are to be developed. The purpose of the HNDA is to provide a robust evidence base to support decisions and inform policies about new housing supply.

It is the Policy of Dublin City Council:

QHSN1

National and Regional Policy

To accord with the provisions of the National Planning Framework 2018, the Regional Spatial and Economic Strategy for the Eastern and Midland Region 2019 (including the Metropolitan Area Strategic Plan) and the Ministerial Circular relating to Structural Housing Demand in Ireland and Housing Supply Targets, and the associated Section 28 Guidelines: Housing Supply Target Methodology for Development Planning (2020) and make provision for the scale of population growth and housing supply targets outlined in these plans and guidelines.

QHSN2

National Guidelines

To have regard to the DEHLG Guidelines on ‘Quality Housing for Sustainable Communities – Best Practice Guidelines for Delivering Homes Sustaining Communities’ (2007), ‘Sustainable Urban Housing: Design Standards for New Apartments’ (2020), ‘Sustainable Residential Development in Urban Areas’ and the accompanying ‘Urban Design Manual: A Best Practice Guide’ (2009), Housing Options for our Aging Population 2020 and the Design Manual for Urban Roads and Streets’ (DMURS) (2019).

QHSN3

Housing Strategy and HNDA
  1. To secure the implementation of the Dublin City Council Housing Strategy (Appendix 1) in accordance with the provision of national legislation.
  2. To encourage the establishment of sustainable residential communities by ensuring a wide variety of housing typologies and tenures is provided throughout the city in accordance with the provisions of the Housing Need Demand Assessment and any future Regional HNDA.

5.5.2  Regeneration, Compact Growth and Densification

The City Council recognises the need to create sustainable communities and address the underlying causes of deprivation through a combination of social, educational and economic initiatives while rejuvenating the built environment in key regeneration areas. As set out in the Core Strategy in Chapter 2, the 17 identified SDRAs will be prioritised for development and intensification over the plan period.

There are significant tracts of vacant and underutilised land in the city. The vacant site levy will continue to be used as an effective active land management mechanism to encourage infill development on key sites throughout the city. Other measures such as the Living City Initiative and the use of the Derelict Sites Act 1990 through the compulsory purchase of land will be used to as a means to encourage brownfield development and compact growth in the city.

The Land Development Agency (LDA) has been established to develop and regenerate relevant public land for the delivery of housing, including providing services to local authorities in order to assist them in the performance of their functions relating to development of sites for housing, developing, managing and acquiring housing for rent or purchase and to promote sustainable development. The Council will work with the LDA to activate key sites and lands that will assist with the delivery of housing. For further active land measures to implement the Core Strategy, please see Chapter 2 ‘Core Strategy’.

In alignment with the MASP, to promote compact growth and sustainable densities through the consolidation and intensification of infill and brownfield lands in the city, it will be the policy of the City Council to achieve greater intensity in suburban areas through infill development, backland development, mews development and re-use of existing housing stock. The Council will continue to support the development of underutilised lands in the city.

Larger regeneration proposals in the city will be required to show through masterplans or other appropriate means, that any proposed future development will support the development of socially balanced neighbourhoods and community, and will help provide for the integration of existing established communities with provision for local requirements including affordable housing, employment and community needs.

Photo of people flying kites on a beach

It is the Policy of Dublin City Council:

QHSN4

Key Regeneration Areas

To promote the transformation of the key regeneration areas into successful socially integrated neighbourhoods and promote area regeneration in parts of the city which require physical improvement and enhancement in terms of quality of life, housing and employment opportunities and to ensure a balanced community is provided in regeneration areas.

QHSN5

Urban Consolidation

To promote and support residential consolidation and sustainable intensification through the consideration of applications for infill development, backland development, mews development, re-use/adaption of existing housing stock and use of upper floors, subject to the provision of good quality accommodation.

QHSN6

Upper Floors

To resist and where the opportunity arises, to reverse the loss of residential use on upper floors and actively support proposals that retain or bring upper floors into residential use in order to revitalise the social and physical fabric of the city through measures such as the Living City Initiative.

Dublin City Council will actively engage with property owners and other stakeholders at a national level to investigate other alternative measures in addition to the Living City Initiative to expedite bringing upper floors into residential use, and will be actioned by the City Recovery Task Force and its successor.

QHSN7

Reduction of Vacancy

To promote measures to reduce vacancy and underuse of existing building stock and to support the refurbishment and retrofitting of existing buildings, including Dublin City Council’s Estate Renewal Programme.

QHSN8

Active Land Management

To promote residential development addressing any shortfall in housing provision through active land management, which will include land acquisition to assist regeneration and meet public housing needs, and a co-ordinated planned approach to developing appropriately zoned lands at key locations including regeneration areas, vacant sites and underutilised sites.

QHSN9

Urban Density

To promote residential development at sustainable densities throughout the city in accordance with the Core Strategy, particularly on vacant and/or underutilised sites, having regard to the need for high standards of urban design and architecture and to successfully integrate with the character of the surrounding area.

It is an Objective of Dublin City Council:

QHSNO1

Land Development Agency

That Dublin City Council will be the lead developer on City Council owned land, unless there are exceptional circumstances, and will work with other agencies including the Land Development Agency to co-ordinate appropriate State owned land and the strategic assembly of public and private land to facilitate regeneration, housing and other developments. Priority will be given to social and affordable housing tenure.

QHSNO2

Lands at Alfie Byrne Road

To undertake a land use and landscape masterplan for the underutilised lands located south east of Clontarf Road Railway station and railway line and fronting onto Alfie Byrne road to examine their potential for the following uses:

  • suitable developments to provide overlooking of the route to Clontarf Road Railway station;
  • upgraded coastal walkway linking to the Tolka River;
  • improved access and setting for the watersports centre;
  • provision of new fire station;
  • possible site for new second level school;
  • provision of new allotment and community gardens; and
  • demarcation and preservation of a circus/funfair location for occasional use.

QHSNO3

Darndale

To undertake a study of peripheral open space areas in Darndale to examine their potential for intensification for infill housing and positive social community facilities or spaces and to create opportunities for enhanced streetscapes.

QHSNO4

Densification of Suburbs

To support the ongoing densification of the suburbs and prepare a design guide regarding innovative housing models, designs and solutions for infill development, backland development, mews development, re-use of existing housing stock and best practice for attic conversions.

QHSNO5

Peripheral Open Space Study

To undertake a study of peripheral open space areas in the North Central Area to examine their potential for intensification for infill development, enhanced greening and creation of urban streetscapes.

QHSNO6

Upper Floor Building Design

To draft additional upper floor building re-design guidelines that are sufficiently innovative and flexible to promote the residential use of vacant upper floors.

5.5.3  Healthy Placemaking and the 15-Minute City

National and regional development policy has become increasingly focused on well-designed urban neighbourhoods and ‘healthy placemaking’. The objective of this policy is to strengthen the connection between people and the places they live by building on local character and encouraging an asset-based approach to the location, design and management of new development in order to create ‘liveable’ communities and urban environments that are attractive, distinct, inclusive, safe, secure, age friendly, accessible,  walkable and healthy. Whilst placemaking is not a new concept, the NPF and RSES have placed a renewed emphasis on its importance as a link between community health and wellbeing, the physical design, layout and use of the built environment and public health policy.

In supporting the objectives of healthy placemaking, the Plan encourages the design of communities to support physical activity (i.e. via inclusion of cycle lanes and accessible recreation areas) in order to encourage residents to live healthier lives. In supporting the wellbeing of the city’s population, the Council will support the Healthy Dublin City Framework[1], the Healthy Ireland Framework 2019-2025, and will endorse the principles of the "Declaration of Montreal on Wellbeing in Cities" which states that wellbeing and health should be at the heart of how we plan and design our city.

As outlined in the vision and introduction to the plan, a core objective of the plan is to promote the principle of the 15-minute city. The 15-minute city concept envisages that within 15 minutes on foot or bike from where they live, that people should have the ability to access most of their daily needs.

Sustainable neighbourhoods serve as focal points for their surrounding community, providing a range of uses, housing tenures and typologies, in addition to adaptable and inclusive social infrastructure, typically set within a high quality and universally accessible physical environment. The design of public spaces should facilitate a variety of needs through, for example, providing play opportunity for children, rest stops for older people and navigable surfaces and finishes to assist persons with a disability or mobility issues. The Council recognise the importance of public realm upgrades to delivering its healthy placemaking objectives.

People sitting out and walking on the Liffey boardwalk

It is the Policy of Dublin City Council:

QHSN10

15-Minute City

To promote the concept of the 15-minute city which provides for liveable, sustainable urban neighbourhoods and villages throughout the city that deliver healthy placemaking, high quality housing and well-designed, safe and inclusive public spaces served by local services, amenities and sustainable modes of transport.

QHSN11

Neighbourhood Development

To encourage neighbourhood development which protects and enhances the quality of our built environment and supports public health and community wellbeing. Promote developments which:

  • build on local character as expressed in historic activities, buildings, materials, housing types or local landscape in order to harmonise with and further develop the unique character of these places;
  • integrate active recreation and physical activity facilities;
  • encourage sustainable and low carbon transport modes through the promotion of alternative modes and ‘walkable communities’ whereby a range of facilities and services will be accessible within short walking or cycling distance;
  • promote and implement low traffic neighbourhoods to ensure a high quality built environment and encourage active travel in delivering the 15 minute city model.
  • promote sustainable design through energy efficiency, use of renewable energy and sustainable building materials and improved energy performance;
  • promote the development of healthy, liveable and attractive places through public realm and environmental improvement projects;
  • cater for all age groups and all levels of ability / mobility and ensuring that universal design is incorporated to maximise social inclusion;
  • provide the necessary inclusive community facilities and design features to promote independence for older people and to maximise quality of life;
  • have regard to the Guiding Principles for ‘Healthy Placemaking’ and ‘Integration of Land Use and Transport’ as set out in the Regional Spatial and Economic Strategy and national policy as set out in ‘Sustainable Residential Development in Urban Areas’ and the ‘Design Manual for Urban Roads and Streets (DMURS)’;
  • are designed to promote safety and security and avoid anti-social behaviour.

QHSN12

Healthy Dublin City Framework and the Healthy Ireland Framework 2019-2025

To support the Healthy Dublin City Framework and the Healthy Ireland Framework 2019-2025 in promoting a long-term vision of improving the physical and mental health and well-being of the population at all stages of life.

Figure 5-1:      A City of Neighbourhoods

5.5.4  Social Inclusion

It is a strategic principle of the development plan to develop a network of sustainable neighbourhoods which have a range of facilities, a choice of tenure and universally designed adaptable house types, promote social inclusion and integration of all minority communities. Social inclusion is about ensuring that everyone has equal opportunity to participate in and contribute to, community life regardless of their age, ability, nationality, ethnic group, religion or any other of the many characteristics that contribute to diversity in our communities and society.

There are a number of groups with specific design and planning needs that must be considered in the planning and design of the built environment and in the location of social and community facilities. These groups include older people, children and young people, people with disabilities, ethnic minorities and the Traveller community.

Older People: In 2016, 72,355 people were aged 65 years and over, comprising 13% of the city’s population and representing an 8.8% increase since 2011. Under most recent Central Statistics Office (CSO) population projections, trends indicate that the number of people over the age of 65 is expected to increase nationally by approximately 34% in the period 2021-2031. As our population ages, it is vital to ensure accessible, affordable housing given the increased number of older persons in private rental accommodation. The quality of life of older people can be improved through planning and the incorporation of universal design principles in the design of the built environment, particularly, housing, community and care facilities and accessible transportation including public transport and footpaths.

Children and Young People: There are over 93,000 young people aged under 18 years living in Dublin City according to the 2016 Census, representing nearly 17% of the population. A young population requires childcare facilities, schools, play areas for children, youth facilities and higher education services.

People with Disabilities: Census 2016 indicates that 81,502 people in the city (14.7% of the population) had a disability, higher than the State average of 13.5%. The planning related issues relevant to people with a sensory disability, mental health disability, physical disability and intellectual disability include the need to facilitate independent living, access, mobility and to ensure access to employment opportunities. Due consideration must be given to the housing rights of people with disabilities under article 19 of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.

Ethnic Minority Groups: Facilities also need to be inclusive so that a community can integrate and socialise across different ethnic groups and facilities should reflect the varying needs of the community. In Dublin City, nearly 20% of residents were of non-Irish nationality in 2016 and in some parts of the city, the migrant population is significantly higher.

The Traveller Community: In Census 2016, 2,080 of the city’s population were from the Traveller Community, accounting for 0.4% of the overall population. Service provision and community facilities for Travellers should reflect and respect the varying needs of the Traveller community.

Dublin City Council will focus on identifying and meeting the needs of local communities and the above groups in existing and newly developed areas of the city, as well as regeneration areas. To ensure a responsive approach to neighbourhood and community development, the City Council will also actively engage with the Social Inclusion Unit, the Public Participatory Network, the Local Community Development Committee and the Local Economic Development Committee. It will also be a priority to facilitate the delivery of the key goals of the Local Economic and Community Plan 2016-2021 (LECP), the subsequent LECP 2021-2026 and the forthcoming Integration Strategy 2021-2025. As outlined in Chapter 6 ‘City Economy and Enterprise’, it is the policy of the City Council to promote and facilitate the implementation of the policies and objectives of the Local Economic and Community Plan 2016-2021.

The promotion of inclusive neighbourhoods that caters for all age groups, that accord with the principles of universal design and that offer quality of opportunity and good services to all is a key priority of the plan. The design of all proposed development should strive to cater for all abilities and age groups including children, older people and people with a range of disabilities. Further details on development standards for universal design and access for all are provided in Chapter 15: Development Standards.

It is the Policy of Dublin City Council:

QHSN13

High Quality Living Environment

To support the entitlement of all members of the community to enjoy a high quality living environment and to support local communities, healthcare authorities and other bodies involved in the provision of facilities for groups with specific design/ planning needs.

QHSN14

Dublin City Council’s Integration Strategy 2021-2025

Having regard to the Migrant Integration Strategy 2017-2020 and any subsequent review, to support minority groups, including non-Irish nationals and Travellers in relation to their social, cultural and community needs in an integrated manner through the implementation of Dublin City Council’s Integration Strategy 2021-2025 and promote active participation consistent with the objectives of the RSES.

QHSN15

Accessible Built Environment

To promote built environments and outdoor shared spaces which are accessible to all. New developments must be in accordance with the seven principles of Universal Design as advocated by the National Disability Authority, Building For Everyone: A Universal Design Approach 2012.

QHSN16

Sustainable Neighbourhoods

To promote sustainable neighbourhoods which cater to the needs of persons in all stages of their lifecycle, i.e. children, people of working age, older people and people with disabilities.

QHSN17

Needs of an Ageing Population

To support the needs of an ageing population in the community with reference to housing, mobility and the public realm having regard to Age Friendly Ireland's ‘Age Friendly Principles and Guidelines for the Planning Authority 2020’, the Draft Dublin City Age Friendly Strategy 2020-2025 and Housing Options for our Aging Population 2020.

QHSN18

Youth Friendly City

To promote and support a youth friendly city including the delivery of facilities for children and young people, to include the delivery of youth targeted social, community and recreational infrastructure. To promote a built environment in the inner city, developing areas and Strategic Development Regeneration Areas which support the physical and emotional well-being of children and young people. To promote policies and objectives that have regard to the Children and Young People’s Plans prepared by the Dublin City North and Dublin City South Children and Young People’s Services Committees and any future DCC Youth Friendly City Strategy including any future youth homeless strategy.

QHSN19

Community Facilities for People with Specific Planning and Design Needs

To facilitate the provision of community facilities for people with specific planning and design needs, such as family resource centres, Traveller resource centres, youth centres and youth cafes, skateboarding areas and kids clubs subject to compliance with normal planning criteria.

QHSN20

Gated Residential Development

It is the policy of Dublin City Council to support the creation of a permeable, connected and well-linked city and to avoid gated residential developments which exclude the public and local community and prevent development of sustainable neighbourhoods.

 

It is an Objective of Dublin City Council:

QHSNO7

Addressing Dementia

To support and encourage pilot schemes such as “Housing with Support Inchicore” to promote innovative ways of ensuring dementia inclusive living is provided for in the built environment, including the use of smart technology.

QHSNO8

Women and Girl’s Safety in the Public Realm

The Council will, during the lifetime of this Plan complete a study of Women and Girl’s Safety in the public realm in order to identify the factors that make women and girls feel safe and unsafe in public spaces, and to make recommendations to guide future public realm changes and developments.

5.5.5  Housing for All

Housing with long-term adaptability and potential for flexibility allows for change as circumstances alter and people’s life cycle evolves. Adaptability that allows for the alteration of the fabric of a building, and flexibility which allows for spaces to accommodate a range of uses, are key considerations in the design of a home.

The City Council seeks to promote housing for all including purpose-built accommodation, assisted living units and lifetime housing. Location is a critical factor when considering supported/assisted living housing as access to public transport and local community facilities are significant factors in improving quality of life. It is also recognised by the Council that some supported/assisted living housing requires live in care and this should be considered when designing adapted housing units.

In terms of housing design, compliance with Part M of the Building regulations expands options available for persons with a disability. All proposals for development shall have regard to the provisions of the principles of Universal Design and the application of lifelong design thinking, as set out in Building For Everyone: A Universal Design Approach 2012, the Universal Design Guidelines for Homes in Ireland issued by the National Disability Authority, Housing Options for our Ageing Population, issued by the Department of Housing, Local Government and Heritage and, the Department of Health and Designing Housing to Meet the Needs of All issued by the Housing Agency.

Housing for Older People

The provision of specific accommodation for older people is supported as this provides alternative residential choices for older people not wishing to enter a nursing home and who wish to remain within their communities. As a general rule, all new developments for step down housing for the older people should be located in close proximity to existing village centres and amenities and services.

As set out in Chapter 15: Development Standards, the Council will consider the subdivision of larger homes in the city and ancillary family accommodation, subject to compliance with the relevant residential standards, which can be utilised to densify the existing urban area and utilise the existing housing stock in a more effective way to cater for additional population and for the demographic changes occurring in the city.

It is the Policy of Dublin City Council:

QHSN21

Adaptable and Flexible Housing

To ensure that all new housing is designed in a way that is adaptable and flexible to the changing needs of the homeowner as set out in the Lifetime Homes Guidance contained in Section 5.2 of the Department of Environment, Heritage and Local Government’s ‘Quality Housing for Sustainable Communities – Best Practice Guidelines for Delivering Homes Sustaining Communities’ (2007).

QHSN22

Independent Living

To support the concept of independent living and assisted living for older people, to support and promote the provision of specific purpose built accommodation, including retirement villages, and to promote the opportunity for older people to avail of the option of ‘rightsizing’, that is the process of adjusting their housing to meet their current needs within their community.

QHSN23

Reconfiguration of Family Homes

To support projects by Approved Housing Bodies and other organisations which enable older homeowners to reconfigure their family-sized homes in a way that meets the needs of an ageing population, creates new single occupancy rentals in an efficient and sustainable way, promotes intergenerational living and helps to regenerate mature urban neighbourhoods.

 

It is an Objective of Dublin City Council:

QHSNO9

Intergenerational Models of Housing

To investigate and encourage intergenerational models of housing for older people, building on pilot projects in the city, incorporating the principles set out in the Universal Design Guidelines for Homes in Ireland 2015 and drawing on international best practice models.

Housing for People with Disabilities

Dublin City Council is committed to implementing the framework for the delivery of housing for persons with disabilities set out under the ‘National Housing Strategy for People with Disability (2011-2016 - extended to 2020). In the strategy, the term ‘disability’ is used to refer to persons in one or more of the following categories of disability: sensory disability, mental health disability, physical disability and intellectual disability.

A new national strategy National Housing Strategy for Persons with Disabilities 2022-2027 is being developed with the objective of facilitating the provision of housing options and related services to people with disabilities to allow individual choice and support independent living. The City Council’s Strategic Plan for Housing People with a Disability 2016, and the subsequent updated plan, identify the pathways the Council will follow to house people with disabilities and describes the personal supports required for the disabled person to live independently. The Council also supports the Assisted Decision Making (Capacity) Act 2015.

It is the Policy of Dublin City Council:

QHSN24

Housing for People with Disabilities

To support access, for people with disabilities, to the appropriate range of housing and related support services, delivered in an integrated and sustainable manner, which promotes equality of opportunity, individual choice and independent living. To support the provision of specific purpose-built accommodation, including assisted/supported living units, lifetime housing, and adaptation of existing properties.

QHSN25

Dublin City Council’s Strategic Plan for Housing People with a Disability 2016

To support and facilitate the implementation of Dublin City Council’s Strategic Plan for Housing People with a Disability 2016 or any subsequent review.

 

It is an Objective of Dublin City Council:

QHSNO10

Universal Design

To require that a minimum of 10% of dwellings in all schemes over 100 units are designed to accommodate people with disabilities and older people in accordance with the Universal Design Guidelines for Homes in Ireland 2015.

Homeless Services

Homelessness requires an inter-agency approach to provide housing options for those who need it. In line with the RSES, the Council will continue to implement the Homeless Action Plan 2019-2021 and support related initiatives to address homelessness, including the work of the Dublin Region Homeless Executive.

It is the Policy of Dublin City Council:

QHSN26

Homeless Action Plan Framework for Dublin 2019-2021

To support the implementation of the Homeless Action Plan Framework for Dublin 2019-2021 or any subsequent review and support related initiatives to address homelessness.

QHSN27

Temporary Homeless Accommodation and Support Services

To ensure that all proposals to provide or extend temporary homeless accommodation or support services shall be supported by information demonstrating that the proposal would not result in an undue concentration of such uses nor undermine the existing local economy, resident community or regeneration of an area. All such applications shall include: a map of all homeless services within a 750 metre radius of the application site, a statement on the catchment area identifying whether the proposal is to serve local or regional demand; and a statement regarding management of the service/facility.

Traveller Accommodation

The Traveller Accommodation Programme 2019-2024, identifies the requirement to provide or assist in the provision of over 200 units across a full range of accommodation types over the period of the programme. The Council will continue to address the provision of accommodation appropriate to the particular needs of Travellers through the implementation of the programme.

It is the Policy of Dublin City Council:

QHSN28

Dublin City Council Traveller Accommodation Programme 2019-2024

To provide a range of accommodation options for Travellers who normally reside in the Dublin City area and who wish to have such accommodation in accordance with the Dublin City Council Traveller Accommodation Programme 2019-2024 (and as updated during the life of the Plan). It is proposed to provide at least 200 accommodation units to address the provision of accommodation appropriate to the particular needs of Travellers over the life of the Development Plan.

QHSN29

Traveller Culture

To recognise the separate identity, culture, tradition and history of the Travelling people and to reduce the levels of disadvantage that Travellers experience.

Provision of Refuges and Emergency Accommodation

The City Council seeks to promote equality and progressively reduce all forms of social exclusion and facilitate the needs of all that can experience a sudden need for housing provision. The Council will work with other statutory agencies to facilitate and support appropriate accommodation and to improve the range and quality of services available.

It is the Policy of Dublin City Council:

QHSN30

Domestic Violence Refuges

To proactively facilitate and support Túsla, the Child and Family Agency, service providers and other relevant agencies in the provision of domestic violence refuges in the city and work towards the realisation of one refuge space for every 10,000 people, as per the recommendation of the Istanbul Convention, particularly when initiating planning on larger regeneration lands.

QHSN31

Emergency Accommodation

To facilitate and support relevant agencies in the development of emergency accommodation that is socially inclusive, including hostels for homeless individuals of all genders. Applications for emergency temporary accommodation including applications made by public bodies will be requested to submit evidence to demonstrate that there is not an over-concentration of emergency accommodation within an area, including a map showing all such facilities within a 0.75km radius of the proposed location of the new facility.

5.5.6  Social, Affordable Purchase and Cost Rental Housing

The centrality of local authorities to delivering housing is recognised in Our Shared Future, the June 2020 Programme for Government and, among other priorities, the emphasis is on developing sustainable, mixed tenure communities.

The government’s ‘Housing for All - a New Housing Plan for Ireland’ (2021) estimates that Ireland will need an average of 10,000 social homes each year over the next five years, with 9,500 of these being new-builds, and an average of 6,000 affordable homes for purchase or rent. An overarching governance structure will be established in the Department of the Taoiseach to oversee the implementation of Housing for All. Government departments, State agencies, Local Authorities, Approved Housing Bodies (AHBs), the Land Development Agency (LDA) and other delivery partners will work with the delivery office to achieve the implementation of the plan.

The Housing Strategy set out in Appendix 1, will be the key planning mechanism for the delivery of new affordable housing and sustainable communities.

The statutory context for the provision of social and affordable housing has changed under the Affordable Housing Act 2021. Dublin City Council will seek to facilitate the maximum allowable provision under the Planning Act (as amended) for affordable and social housing provision as part of future planning permissions, reflecting the high levels of demand within the city.

  • The Affordable Housing Act provides for a requirement that any new planning permission granted for housing subject to the Act will have a 20% Part V requirement on that land where;
  • At least half of the land or equivalent net monetary value obtained under Part V must be used for social housing support.
  • The remainder can be used for affordable purchase housing, cost rental housing or both.
  • If there is no requirement for affordable housing, the remainder can be used as an additional discount on construction costs, or for more social housing.
  • The Planning Authority will review the Part V of the requirements contained in this Plan if the legislation underpinning this requirement is amended.

Dublin City Council is currently delivering through a variety of mechanisms approximately 80 social housing projects. Dublin City Council is also charged with piloting a cost rental development and has identified four potential developments for further cost rental schemes and eleven developments identified for affordable purchase homes. Over the plan period, the council will continue to take proactive measures, including the acquisition of land, to deliver the housing needs of the city and to use all suitable sites and properties owned by the council to deliver mixed income housing, community and cultural facilities. In terms of the development of publicly owned land, the City Council will aspire as far as is possible, to be the lead developer of such land.

Public housing is defined by the Council as high quality sustainable housing for all citizens regardless of income that is rented from one’s local authority or its nominees (AHBs) so as to affordably and securely provide for one’s particular housing needs. The Council will support the work of the Housing SPC, including the Public Housing Sub-Committee, in regard to public housing in the city and will support the housing mix agreed by the city council on future Council owned lands.

In addition to the implementation of Part V, the Council will work in partnership with the Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government, Approved Housing Bodies and other key stakeholders to deliver and manage social housing. Other mechanisms of delivery will include direct build, acquisitions, void management, long term leasing, enhanced leasing, repair to lease, private rental (RAS and HAP) and the Buy and Renew Scheme.

It is the Policy of Dublin City Council:

QHSN32

Social, Affordable Purchase and Cost Rental Housing

To promote the provision of social, affordable purchase, cost rental and rental housing in accordance with the Council’s Housing Strategy, Part V of the Planning and Development Act, as amended by the Affordable Housing Act 2021 and government policy as outlined in the DHLGH ‘Social Housing Strategy 2020’ and support the realisation of public housing.

QHSN33

Diversity of Housing Type and Tenure

To support local authorities, approved housing bodies and other sectoral agencies in the provision of a greater diversity of housing type and tenure, including social and affordable housing, new models of cost rental and affordable homeownership and co-operative housing.

5.5.7  Specific Housing Typologies

Apartments and Houses

The type of housing in the city has been changing, with apartments now constituting the main household type in the city. The share of apartments in Dublin City was 35.2% in 2016, up from 33.3% recorded in 2011 and forecast by the HNDA to be 40% by the end of the Plan period. Successful apartment living requires that the scheme must be designed as an integral part of the neighbourhood and it is the policy of this development plan to have regard to the relevant guidelines for apartment development and sustainable communities including the DEHLG Guidelines on ‘Quality Housing for Sustainable Communities – Best Practice Guidelines for Delivering Homes Sustaining Communities’ (2007) and ‘Sustainable Urban Housing: Design Standards for New Apartments’ (2020).

Development opportunities for house developments are more limited in the city. However, there are opportunities for such schemes, particularly on small infill sites. All apartment and housing development shall provide an appropriate mix of housing types and shall clearly demonstrate how the resultant mix of units has had regard to the Housing Strategy, HNDA and the development standards set out in Chapter 15. In this respect, the Housing Strategy has identified particular challenges in the provision of a balanced residential mix the North Inner City and Liberties area, having regard to demographic changes in households and taking into account current housing stock. A defined mix of unit types will be required in these areas as set out in in Section 15.9.1 and Table 37 of the Housing Strategy. This requirement is necessary to ensure a mix of dwelling types and sizes so as to best cater for the expected future household needs in these areas, so that as household needs change, the need of citizens, in all stage of lifecycle and family circumstance can be met within or adjoining their existing neighbourhoods.

It is also recognised that Census 2016 recorded nearly 63,000 households renting privately in Dublin City. The City Council seeks to foster a strong, sustainable, professional and well regulated private rental sector which is fit for purpose in that it is affordable and accessible to those living in the private rental sector and in this regard, supports the provision of purpose built, high quality, well managed, private rented accommodation with a long term horizon. The City Council also promotes good property management to ensure that there is satisfactory upkeep and maintenance of communal areas and facilities.

It is the Policy of Dublin City Council:

QHSN34

High Quality Apartment Development

To promote the provision of high quality apartments within sustainable neighbourhoods by achieving suitable levels of amenity within individual apartments, and within each apartment development, and ensuring that suitable social infrastructure and other support facilities are available in the neighbourhood.

QHSN35

Houses and Apartments

To ensure that new houses and apartments provide for the needs of family accommodation with a satisfactory level of residential amenity in accordance with the standards for residential accommodation.

QHSN36

Housing and Apartment Mix

To encourage and foster the creation of attractive, mixed use, sustainable residential communities which contain a wide variety of housing and apartment types, sizes and tenures, in accordance with the Housing Strategy and HNDA, with supporting community facilities and residential amenities.

Further detail in regard to unit mix is set out in Chapter 15: Development Standards. Unit mix requirements for the Liberties and the North Inner City are set out in Section 15.9.1 and Table 37 of the Housing Strategy in Appendix 1.

QHSN37

Management

To promote efficient and effective property management in order to secure the satisfactory upkeep and maintenance of communal areas in the context of the Multi Unit Developments Act 2011 and the Property Services (Regulation) Act 2011.

Build to Rent (BTR) and Shared Accommodation

New housing typologies have emerged and developed in recent years including Build to Rent and Shared Accommodation (also known as ‘co-living’). The ‘Design Standards for New Apartments - Guidelines for Planning Authorities’ were updated in 2020 and aim to enable a mix of apartment types, make better provision for building refurbishment and infill schemes and address the emerging Build to Rent and Shared Accommodation sectors.

It is recognised that Build to Rent (BTR) serves an important role in meeting housing demand and can fill a gap in tenure mix in established areas of owner-occupier housing. Recent emerging trends however, would indicate that the dominance of BTR in large schemes can be to the detriment of build to sell units. Whilst such development has its place in the hierarchy of provision of homes across the city, the Planning Authority will seek to avoid over proliferation of such use in certain areas and encourage such development as part of a healthy mix of tenure in order to create sustainable communities and neighbourhoods.

BTR should be concentrated in prime inner city areas and also in areas of high intensity employment use such as within 500 metres walking distance of a high employment area i.e. more than 500 employees per hectare, within 500m of major public transport interchanges (e.g. Connolly Station, Tara Street Station and Heuston Station) and within identified Strategic Development Regenerations Zones.

Furthermore, applications for BTR schemes should be required to demonstrate that there is not an over-concentration of Build to Rent Accommodation within an area, including a map showing all such facilities within 3km of a proposal. Such housing will be controlled in the interest of providing a mix of tenure and unit types. In assessing the matter of overconcentration, the Planning Authority will have regard to factors such as:

  • the number and scale of other permitted BTR development in the vicinity (3km) of the site,
  • the household tenure and housing type of existing housing stock in the approximate vicinity (3km) of the site and
  • the proximity of the proposal to high capacity urban public transport stops and interchange (such as DART, Luas and BusConnects).

There will be a general presumption against large scale residential developments (in excess of 100 units) which comprise of 100% BTR typology. To ensure a sustainable mix of tenure and long term sustainable communities, a minimum of 40% of standard build to sell apartments will be required in such instances. BTR schemes of less than 100 units will generally not be supported. The concept of Built to Rent requires a critical mass of accommodation to provide a meaningful provision of communal facilities and services. Smaller BTR schemes with less than 100 units will only be considered where it can be demonstrated that there is a strong need for the development and a detailed justification is provided.

In regard to shared accommodation and further to Specific Planning Policy Requirement 9 of ‘Sustainable Urban Housing: Design Standards for New Apartments’, 2020, the HNDA analysis does not indicate a specific demand for shared accommodation in Dublin City and, therefore, there will be a general presumption against granting planning permission for this form of development.

It is the Policy of Dublin City Council:

QHSN38

Build to Rent Accommodation

To facilitate the provision of Build to Rent (BTR) Accommodation in the following specific locations:

  • Within the Inner City (i.e. within the canal ring).
  • Within 500 metre walking distance of a high employment area i.e. more than 500 employees per hectare.
  • Within 500 metres of major public transport interchanges (e.g. Connolly Station, Tara Street Station and Heuston Station), and
  • Within identified Strategic Development Regenerations Areas.

There will be a general presumption against large scale residential developments (in excess of 100 units) which comprise of 100% BTR typology. To ensure a sustainable mix of tenure and long term sustainable communities, a minimum of 40% of standard build to sell apartments will be required in such instances.

There will be a presumption against the proliferation and over concentration of BTR development in any one area. In this regard, applications for BTR developments should be accompanied by an assessment of other permitted BTR developments in the vicinity (3km) of the site to demonstrate that the development would not result in the over-concentration of one housing tenure in a particular area and take into regard the geographical area of the BTR'.

QHSN39

Built to Rent Accommodation

To discourage BTR Accommodation schemes of less than 100 units due to the need to provide a critical mass of accommodation to provide a meaningful provision of communal facilities and services. Smaller BTR accommodation schemes with less than 100 units will only be considered in exceptional circumstances and where a detailed justification is provided.

QHSN40

Built to Rent Accommodation

To foster community both within a BTR scheme and to encourage its integration into the existing community, the applicant will be requested to provide an evidenced based analysis that the proposed resident support facilities are appropriate to the intended rental market having regard to the scale and location of the proposal.  The applicant must also demonstrate how the BTR scheme must contribute to the sustainable development of the broader community and neighbourhood.

QHSN41

Shared Accommodation/Co-living

That there will be a general presumption against the granting of planning permission for shared accommodation/co-living in Dublin City as per Specific Planning Policy Requirement (SPPR) 9 of ‘Sustainable Urban Housing: Design Standards for New Apartments’, 2020 and the HNDA analysis undertaken.

QHSN42

Build to Rent/Student Accommodation/Co-living Development

It is the policy of DCC to avoid the proliferation and concentration of clusters of build to rent/student accommodation/co-living development in any area of the city.

Provision of Student Accommodation

Purpose-built student accommodation (PBSA) plays an important role in providing well managed student accommodation for the approximately 53,000 students in the city. Such schemes have also in many instances had positive impacts resulting in greater availability of housing stock in the private residential sector to meet housing demands and transformative regeneration benefits.

The National Student Accommodation Strategy, published in May 2017, identified the key target of the construction of at least an additional 16,374 PBSA bed spaces to provide an overall supply of 28,806 PBSA bed spaces in the Dublin area by 2024. The “Social, Economic and Land Use Study of the Impact of PBSA in Dublin City” commissioned by Dublin City Council in 2019, identified that the number of PBSA bed spaces had the potential to grow to a total of approximately 14,000 PBSA bed spaces by 2024, given the number of PBSA bed spaces approved and in the planning system.

The geographical spread shows the clustering of the facilities within 1km of the larger third level institutions within the city, allowing most residents to easily walk to their place of education. International comparisons indicate that Dublin has a relatively low proportion of students accommodated in PBSA, with approximately 16% of the student population accommodated in PBSA in 2018, compared to approximately 38% in Edinburgh.

As identified by the National Student Accommodation Strategy, by developing and utilising an appropriate Management Plan for PBSA, the managers of PBSA can minimise any potential negative impacts from the PBSA developments and their occupants on surrounding properties and neighbourhoods and can create a positive and safe living environment for students and develop and enhance the neighbourhoods in which they are situated for the betterment of the whole community. As set out in the Chapter 15; Development Standards, applicants for student accommodation will be requested to submit evidence to demonstrate that there is not an over-concentration of student accommodation within an area, including a map showing all such facilities within 1km of a proposal and must be accompanied by documentation outlining how the scheme will be professionally managed.

It is the Policy of Dublin City Council:

QHSN43

Third-Level Student Accommodation

To support the provision of high-quality, professionally managed and purpose-built third-level student accommodation in line with the provisions of the National Student Accommodation Strategy (2017), on campuses or in appropriate locations close to the main campus, in the inner city or adjacent to high-quality public transport corridors and cycle routes, in a manner which respects the residential amenity and character of the surrounding area, in order to support the knowledge economy. Proposals for student accommodation shall comply with the ‘Guidelines for Student Accommodation’ contained in the development standards chapter. There will be a presumption against allowing any student accommodation development to be converted to any other use during term time.

Handrawn photo by Kathlyn Thomas

Picture by Katelyn Thomas, St. Catherine's Senior School, Cabra

Houseboats

Innovative housing solutions, including working with Waterways Ireland to identify appropriate locations for the provision of additional houseboat serviced mooring locations will be supported by the City Council.

It is the Policy of Dublin City Council:

QHSN44

Houseboats

To work with Waterways Ireland to identify appropriate locations for additional houseboat serviced mooring locations and ancillary facilities.

5.5.8  Social and Community Infrastructure

Social and community infrastructure is an essential part of all communities. The RSES states that successful places support a wide range of services and facilities that meet local and strategic needs and contribute towards a good quality of life. Facilities like schools, health centres, childcare facilities, libraries, recreation, sports, cultural facilities and playgrounds can function as a focal points within their neighbourhoods and can provide venues for social activities and events.

National and regional planning and development policy places a renewed emphasis on providing resources – such as social infrastructure – in the right place at the right time, as the basis for successful place-making and community development. MASP supports the provision of education, health and community facilities in tandem with the development of the region’s strategic development areas, to ensure that opportunities for social as well as physical regeneration are realised. Compact growth and connected infrastructure is to be achieved through an ‘integrated growth model’ which ensures that the provision of investment in new community, enterprise, arts and social infrastructure is coordinated and integrated with the growth and regeneration of designated strategic development areas or areas of significant future development.

The Council recognises that the provision of good quality and multi-functional social and community infrastructure in the city’s existing and developing areas is a key element in the development of successful neighbourhoods and sustainable communities. The alignment of new housing development to be phased in line with availability of essential social and community infrastructure, services and amenities will be a key focus of the plan-making process going forward in order to, where feasible, co-ordinate and phase development. Where feasible and practicable, key social and community infrastructure will be delivered in the first phases of development.

In this regard, it is a policy of the Council to ensure that all residential applications comprising of 50 or more units shall include a community and social audit to assess the provision of community facilities and infrastructure within the vicinity of the site and to identify whether there is a need to provide additional facilities to cater for the proposed development (refer to Chapter 15: Development Standards for further details).

The RSES also identifies a stronger role for Local Community Development Committees (LCDCs) in identifying social infrastructure needs and in co-ordinating the activities of local authorities, service providers and community stakeholders through the implementation of the Local Economic and Community Plan. The RSES also encourages the shared use and co-location of facilities in order to align service provision and to use development land more efficiently.

The Council will also seek to work with the LCDC to make the most efficient use of existing social and community infrastructure by co-locating and sharing the use of facilities amongst the wider community and by continuing to invest in infrastructure upgrade and regeneration projects to make these facilities more adaptable, inclusive and accessible to all community members.

It is the Policy of Dublin City Council:

QHSN45

High Quality Neighbourhood and Community Facilities

To encourage and facilitate the timely and planned provision of a range of high-quality neighbourhood and community facilities which are multifunctional in terms of their use, adaptable in terms of their design and located to ensure that they are accessible and inclusive to all.

QHSN46

Community and Social Audit

To ensure that all residential applications comprising of 50 or more units shall include a community and social audit to assess the provision of community facilities and infrastructure within the vicinity of the site and identify whether there is a need to provide additional facilities to cater for the proposed development. Refer to Section 15.8.2 of Chapter 15: Development Standards.

QHSN47

Phasing

To require that larger schemes which will be developed over a considerable period of time are developed in accordance with an agreed phasing programme to ensure that suitable physical, social and community infrastructure is provided in tandem with the residential development and that substantial infrastructure is available to initial occupiers.

QHSN48

Inclusive Social and Community Infrastructure

To support the development of social and community infrastructure that is inclusive and accessible in its design and provides for needs of persons with disabilities, older people, migrant communities and children and adults with additional needs including the sensory needs of the neurodiverse.

QHSN49

Amenities and Retail

To ensure all areas of the city, including those that have Local Area Plans, deliver social infrastructure, sports and recreational facilities, retail outlets, schools and infrastructure in accordance to an agreed phasing programme to ensure large neighbourhoods are not left isolated without essential services.

 

It is an Objective of Dublin City Council:

QHSNO11

Community Infrastructure Audit SDRAs

To carry out and maintain an audit of community infrastructure for Strategic Development and Regeneration Areas, where appropriate.

QHSNO12

Community Safety Strategy

That all housing developments over 100 units shall include a community safety strategy for implementation.

QHSNO13

Culture Near You Tool

To utilise the potential of the Council’s Culture Near You tool over the lifetime of the Plan in the preparation of social and community audits.

Healthcare

The provision of healthcare services in Dublin city is the primary responsibility of the Health Service Executive (HSE) who manage all of city’s main hospitals/ healthcare facilities, with additional healthcare provision by other statutory, voluntary and private healthcare providers.

The government’s 2018 Sláintecare Plan encourages the development and resourcing of ‘community healthcare’ which it identifies as the future direction of health and social care services in Ireland. The National Planning Framework focuses on the development of acute hospital services, community healthcare services (i.e. primary care centres) and integrated health/ social care services (disability, mental health, services for older people), and requires that consideration is given to the location, number, profile and population needs when developing new facilities. In dealing with healthcare, regional policy highlights gaps in the regions healthcare infrastructure that need to be addressed to meet the health care needs of a growing and ageing population, in particular, the demand and capacity for primary care, acute care and social care services.

The Council will support the provision of public and private healthcare facilities, together with community support services, on suitably located and zoned lands in easily accessible locations throughout the city. Such facilities should benefit communities by providing multi-disciplinary health care, mental health and wellbeing services which could include initiatives such as men’s sheds. The Council will also seek to facilitate healthcare authorities in the provision, consolidation, co-location and enhancement of hospitals/ healthcare facilities and in the development of accessible community-based healthcare in residential areas including nursing homes and elder-care homes which provide for intermediate care.

It is the Policy of Dublin City Council:

QHSN50

Sláintecare Plan

To support the Health Service Executive and other statutory, voluntary and private agencies in the provision of appropriate healthcare facilities - including the system of hospital care and the provision of community-based primary care facilities, mental health and wellbeing facilities including Men’s Sheds - and to encourage the integration of healthcare facilities in accessible locations within new and existing communities in accordance with the government Sláintecare Plan.

Schools and Education

Schools and education facilities are essential social infrastructure for new and existing city neighbourhoods. National policy highlights the importance of aligning demographics with educational provision.

The Council recognise that strategic planning of, and investment in, the provision of education and training is central to delivering sustainable and inclusive communities and will continue to work with the Department of Education and Skills (DES) to examine the co-ordination between the city’s growth areas / emerging communities and the provision of new/ enhanced schools and education facilities at locations which are easily accessible and well served by public transport, walking and cycling routes.

The Council seek to encourage innovative school design which provides for the efficient use of urban lands and which embraces sustainable mobility management (refer to Chapter 8). School typologies that contribute to the identity of a neighbourhood and which include adequate play, sport and recreational amenities will be promoted. The efficient use of lands will be encouraged through the development of new urban typologies of school building design which should have regard to the requirements set out by the DES Schools’ Design Guidelines (refer also to Chapter 15: Development Standards).

While education is the primary role of schools, they also provide a broader social and community function. Schools frequently facilitate out of hours social and community activities, such as use by sports clubs, night classes or local group meetings, all of which benefit the local and wider community. The Council will continue to support and encourage the efficient use / sharing of educational facilities in proximity to residential neighbourhoods and public transport. In addition to new school development, the Council will support and encourage the appropriate development and/or redevelopment of existing schools within the city, including encouraging multi-campus development that will enhance existing facilities, including on-site sports facilities.

The Plan also seeks to respond to a number of trends in the higher education sector, including the masterplanning, co-location and amalgamation of educational infrastructure which creates potential for former educational lands to be redeveloped for other purposes; the growth of the adult/ further education sector due to increased government resourcing; and the increasing role of Education and Training Boards in the forward planning of educational infrastructure.

The Council specifically recognises the importance of public and private 3rd level education and training institutions to our city - including Trinity College, University College Dublin, Dublin City University, Dublin Institute of Technology / Technological University Dublin, Griffith College, Dublin Business School, National College of Ireland, Royal College of Surgeons and the National College of Art and Design – and support their need for development, expansion and consolidation in line with national policy.

It is the Policy of Dublin City Council:

QHSN51

Education Provision
  1. To support the provision of new schools and the expansion of existing school facilities having regard to the requirements of the DES.
  2. To support the ongoing development and provision of third level education, further education and lifelong learning in the city.

QHSN52

Shared Use of Educational Facilities
  1. To encourage the co-location of schools/education facilities as part of education campuses and with other community uses to create community hubs.
  2. To support the shared use of school or college grounds and facilities with the local community, outside of core hours, anchoring such uses within the wider community.

It is an Objective of Dublin City Council:

QHSNO14

Assess Need for New or Expanded Educational Facilities
  1. To continue to work with the Department of Education and Skills on the educational needs of the city through a Joint Working Group in order to assess the need for new or expanded educational facilities and to progress school projects in line with population growth in locations served by public transport and walking / cycling networks.
  2. To work with the Department of Further and Higher Education and the City of Dublin Education and Training Board in relation to the identification of suitable sites for new and extended education facilities.

QHSNO15

The Provision of Schools and the Planning System: A Code of Practice for Planning Authorities (2008)

To seek to reserve lands for educational purposes, including the development of multi-campus arrangements where appropriate, in locations close to the areas of greatest residential expansion or greatest amount of unmet demand for school places and in close proximity to adjacent community facilities so that the benefits of co-location and possibility of sharing facilities can be maximised in accordance with The Provision of Schools and the Planning System: A Code of Practice for Planning Authorities (2008).

Childcare Facilities

The provision of good quality and fit-for-purpose neighbourhood-based and local childcare services are central to providing for sustainable communities.

The government’s Childcare Facilities: Guidelines for Planning Authorities (2001) and Circular on Childcare Facilities (2016) provide a policy framework to guide local authorities on the provision of childcare facilities in suitable locations including residential areas, employment nodes, large educational establishments, district and neighbourhood centres and in locations convenient to public transport networks. This guidance also recommends the provision of one childcare facility per 75 no. residential units with a pro-rata increase for residential developments in excess of this size threshold.

The provision of childcare facilities within new and existing residential areas shall have regard to the capacity and geographical distribution of established childcare facilities in the locality and the emerging demographic profile of the area. Flexibility on lower provision will only be provided on the basis of an evidence-based demographic and locational justification (see Section 15.8.4 of Chapter 15: Development Standards).

It is important also to ensure that pre-school facilities are protected from excessive air pollution. Applications for pre-school facilities located within or adjacent to areas identified as experiencing high levels of air pollution must include mitigation measures as part of their design. Locating outdoor play areas adjacent to busy junctions/roads should be avoided.

The Council will continue to work with the Dublin City Childcare Committee and the newly established childcare planning function within the Department of Children and Youth Affairs through the forward planning and development management processes in order to support the government’s objective to provide for sufficient high quality and affordable childcare services.

It is the Policy of Dublin City Council:

QHSN53

Childcare Facilities

To facilitate the provision of appropriately designed and sized fit-for-purpose affordable childcare facilities as an integral part of proposals for new residential and mixed-use developments, subject to an analysis of demographic and geographic need undertaken by the applicant in consultation with the Dublin City Council Childcare Committee, in order to ensure that their provision and location is in keeping with areas of population and employment growth.

It is an Objective of Dublin City Council:

QHSNO16

Pre-School Facilities

To ensure that pre-school facilities are appropriately sited and protected from air pollution. Where an application is made within or proximate to locations experiencing high levels of pollution, the application must adequately address the impact through design and repositioning, and provide a suitable, attractive protected outdoor environment before permission can be considered.

Children’s Play

National policy encourages the continued provision and enhancement of facilities and amenities for children and young people.

The Dublin City Play Strategy ‘Pollinating Play!’ 2020 – 2025 advocates for a child-friendly and playful city where all children and young people (ages 0-18) can enjoy and fully exercise their right to play and have child friendly physical activity. This would include access to playgrounds, youth focused spaces and opportunities for play friendly neighbourhoods and public realm. The development plan will support the creation of effective, fit-for-purpose and well-designed city play infrastructure that caters to a variety of needs and age groups in line with wider Council policy. Further policy regarding play, sports and recreational facilities is set out in Chapter 10: Green Infrastructure and Recreation and Chapter 15: Development Standards.

Other Community Infrastructure

A range of community facilities and infrastructure will be essential to support sustainable neighbourhoods and communities throughout the city, especially in newly emerging or developing areas. The delivery and sustainable funding of such infrastructure will be a key focus of the City Council with consideration of innovative mechanisms including strategic partnerships with the private sector, as well as government and state agencies, and implementation through the development management process.

The development of appropriate neighbourhood centres to include retail, retail services and facilities such as financial institutions and post offices also plays an important role in providing adequate facilities to local communities and neighbourhoods as set out in Chapter 7: The City Centre and Urban Villages. Cultural facilities also play an integral role in the creation of sustainable neighbourhoods (see Chapter 12: Culture).

Places of Worship / Graveyards

The Council recognise the need for a range of religious facilities as an important component of community infrastructure. Places of worship often provide a community resource through which the residents of a neighbourhood can gain information, education, medical or welfare assistance and social contact.

Libraries

The Dublin City Library Development Plan ‘Libraries Unlimited: A Strategic Direction for Dublin City Libraries 2019-2023’ recognises the pivotal role of public libraries across the city in enabling the Council to deliver information and services in support its citizens, visitors and workers. The Council currently operate 23 no. library branches across the city and as the role of the library service continues to evolve and develop, it will be important that they continue to meet the needs to local communities. The Council will continue to support the development and enhancement of library facilities in the city.

It is the Policy of Dublin City Council:

QHSN54

Places of Worship and Multi-faith Facilities

To support and facilitate the development of places of worship and multi-faith facilities at suitable locations within the city and to liaise and work with all stakeholders where buildings are no longer required to find suitable, appropriate new uses and to retain existing community facilities where feasible. To ensure that new regeneration areas respond to the need for the provision of new faith facilities as part of their masterplans/Local Area Plans/SDZs where such need is identified.

QHSN55

Burial Grounds

To facilitate the development of new or extended burial grounds, including green cemeteries, eco-burial grounds, columbarium walls and crematoria, having consideration for the burial preferences of multi-faith and non-religious communities, at suitable locations in the city, subject to appropriate safeguards with regard to environmental considerations, noise and traffic impacts.

QHSN56

Culture in Regeneration

To recognise culture as an important mechanism in regeneration, with the potential to act as a catalyst for integration, community development and civic engagement.

QHSN57

City’s Library Service

To continue to develop and improve the city’s library service to meet the needs of local communities by supporting the implementation of the Libraries Unlimited: A Strategic Direction for Dublin City Libraries 2019-2023.

QHSN58

Community Facilities

To support the development, improvement and provision of a wide range of socially inclusive, multi-functional and diverse community facilities throughout the city where required and to engage with community and corporate stakeholders in the provision of same.

It is an Objective of Dublin City Council:

QHSNO17

Ballymun Library

To undertake a feasibility study for Ballymun library on its possible relocation within Ballymun Town Centre.

 
 

[1] Healthy Dublin City aligns to Healthy Ireland, the National Framework for Improved Health and Wellbeing 2013-2025 and is designed to move the population towards healthier living. It aims to optimise opportunities where people can be supported and empowered in the environments where they live and work to ensure they achieve their fullest health potential.