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17th May 2018

Current Housing Situation In Dublin Means People Are Living In ‘Absolute Squalor’


People are living in “absolute squalor” in inner city flats, according to Independent Councillor Mannix Flynn. 

Speaking on Today with Sean O’Rourke on RTE Radio One yesterday, Flynn compared living conditions now to those at the time he was growing up in Mercer House in Dublin 2, a block of flats built in the 1930s.

Flynn said: “We all [17 people] basically fitted in there because that’s how it was back then, but the woman upstairs had 21 children…

“And at that stage of the game, Dublin City Council was maintaining the buildings and so on and so forth, and it was a different lifestyle and a different way of living.

“In Summerhill and Sean McDermott Street I remember going into houses where people were so poor they were actually burning the floorboards.

“And these conditions, I have to say, are now very much the norm in these blocks of flats.”

He added that people are living in “absolute squalor” because architectural conservationists refuse to demolish historic complexes 

Journalist Frank McDonald argued against Flynn’s claim that the buildings should be demolished, saying that the buildings are “incredibly valued.”

He added that: “There are queues of people lining up to get into those flats and you have to go before a committee and the rest of it to be approved to live there.

“It beggars belief that they are thinking of demolishing buildings because they’re old. That is just nonsense.”

Dublin City Council has stated however, in a recent paper, that demolishing to complexes to redevelop them might be an option. 

“We fully recognise the importance of the several protected buildings that are included in our stock of apartment complexes, and there are no plans to demolish any of these.

“However, as outlined in our paper, a very small number of these are in poor condition and the option of delisting and demolition should at least be considered by elected members.

“Any decision on this is not necessarily at this stage.”

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