Joint Committee on Housing, Local Government and Heritage publishes report on Urban Regeneration

3 Jun, 2022

The Joint Oireachtas Committee on Housing, Local Government and Heritage has published its report Urban Regeneration in which it makes 39 recommendations around incentives and enforcement measures, policy issues and resourcing aimed at regenerating urban centres by bringing derelict or vacant properties back into use, including for social and affordable housing.

The committee heard representations from a number of experts in the field, including five colleagues from the School of Transport Engineering, Environment and Planning at TU Dublin, who presented to the committee at two separate sittings. Technological University Dublin representatives included:

  • Mr David O’Connor, Head of Environment & Planning
  • Dr Sarah Rock, Lecturer and Programme Director
  • Dr Lorraine D’Arcy, Senior Lecturer, School of Environment and Planning
  • Mr Odran Reid, Chair of the MSc Spatial Planning Programme
  • Ms Helen Murray O’Connor, Senior Lecturer & Programme Chair

Discussing the issue of vacancy Mr Odran Reid from TU Dublin also noted that the value of ‘living over the shop’ is not necessarily the quantum of development it would bring forward; but it is also about the effect it has on town centres, particularly in rural Ireland, and in creating a sense of vibrancy in city and town centres.   “Equally, the concept of heritage buildings lying vacant, unused or underused, because it is too difficult or too expensive to bring them back into use is difficult to excuse. An unused building that is rotting but protected is an oxymoron.”

The full report can be viewed here.