AS the construction industry combats Ireland’s housing crisis against the backdrop of a global pandemic, the Housing Infrastructure Services Company (HISCo) has been launched to support residential development and help bring housing targets to fruition.
HISCo, launched with the support of its two joint shareholders; Cork County Council and the Ireland Strategic Investment Fund (ISIF), will offer a complete design, build and finance service for housing estate and associated infrastructure.
Despite a 64% year-on-year increase in planning permissions granted, the Covid-19 pandemic has had a dramatic impact on the number of housing completions in 2020.
With the latest CSO figures showing a fall in completions of almost 9% year-on-year, support for the housing industry in bringing projects to completion is more critical now than ever.
HISCo has developed an innovative model that enables the efficient delivery and financing of infrastructure for residential development supporting developers in this element of a project.
The provision of infrastructure for residential developments can present a significant barrier to construction activity.
HISCo offers finance and delivery of this key infrastructure with repayment only required when the developer begins to realise income from the sale or occupation of housing units.
HISCo can also provide support to deliver off-site infrastructure that may be acting as an impediment to the delivery of housing e.g. upgrading wastewater treatment plants, relief roads, roundabouts, etc.
The support provided by HISCo allows those in a position to meet market demand for housing to undertake planned projects.
Speaking at the launch of the Housing Infrastructure Services Company, CEO Niall Morrissey said: “The financing and provision of infrastructure for new properties can pose a challenge for many developers.
“Our company delivers an efficient, cost-effective solution to help alleviate that challenge. Ireland is being rebuilt and HISCo wants to play a role in the future provision of residential development.
“The board of HISCo has the experience and skills to work with the industry and ensure consistent and high-quality infrastructure.
“The unique element of the HISCo model is the facility to defer repayment until a developer is generating income which should also avoid unnecessary project delays often caused by budgeting issues, labour challenges, project management and a lack of necessary infrastructure.”
HISCo is based in Cork and while it will work with developers across the country, the initial focus will be in Cork county while it scales up in bringing new developments to the market.