NEW life will be breathed into the Barrack Street area of the city with the commencement of a delayed council housing project next month which will bring new families to the area.
Almost two years ago, Cork City Council voted in favour of a process to transform unused, derelict and vacant sites on Barrack Street with the construction of over 30 housing units.
The development will be completed at the rear of the block by the former Nancy Spains bar and off licence.
Delays were caused to the project due to unforeseen circumstances with the developers behind the project.
“Work is due to start on the Barrack Street housing project in October which to my mind is long overdue, given that we signed off on it as a council early in 2017,” city councillor Mick Finn said.
“It was announced back then as part of a €25m investment in three areas of the city, with White Street and High Street well progressed to date.”
Cllr Finn said he hoped that this development at the rear of the block by Nancy Spains would help to lift the area, removing some anti-social issues that exist and clearing up derelict sites.
“Dereliction has been a blackspot on Barrack Street for the last 20 to 30 years with once great and iconic shops long-since closed."
"Some owners were allowed to sit on properties that were crumbling which was a real ‘two fingers’ to the street. However, fantastic people like the late Tom Barry and the Broderick family kept the street vibrant in recent times and news of this new housing project – alongside the previous regeneration of the streetscape itself – is good news."
"Of course, we all know that the realisation of the event centre project nearby would be the icing on the cake and would undoubtedly result in investment by those sitting on sites in the vicinity.”
The former Lord Mayor added that the addition of new families would also help to address some issues associated with the spread of the university.
“My views on student accommodation in the wrong location are well known - as indeed are my views on the need for them in a structured and strategic approach which we are still missing – and I think the fact that these houses will be occupied by families will help to rebuild in a small way the social fabric of this great street and parish. It will assist local schools and clubs and will help balance the residential mix of this particular part of the city.”
Cllr Finn has also called on the council to invest in the nearby Noonan Road flats as part of its regeneration and refurbishment agenda.
“I am confident that we will have progress on this soon, as it has been overlooked in recent years despite assurances to local councillors.”