Work underway on eight new apartments for Cork people trapped in long term homelessness

Work underway on eight new apartments for Cork people trapped in long term homelessness
St. Joachim and St. Anne’s on Anglesea Street has always served as a residential care home in a number of different ways including an asylum for “distressed females” and a self-catering home for elderly women. Picture Dan Linehan

Builders are on-site at St Joachim and St Anne’s building on Anglesea St which is being renovated into Cork Simon apartments for people trapped in long term homelessness.

The €1m project is developing eight one-bedroom apartments within the protected building, that was built in 1958.

Each apartment will have its own entrance and the redevelopment is expected to be ready for occupation by October next year.

The funding, the majority of which was secured through a Captial Acquisition Scheme (CAS), was allocated in 2014 but was then only made available in July 2018.

Speaking about the project, Cork Simon Director Dermot Kavanagh said they are trying to provide more housing where it will have the greatest impact.

“Those in long term homelessness will be prioritised for the housing scheme.” Mr Kavanagh also said that all tenants will be supported by the Cork Simon housing support team “for as long as they need it”.

As the building is a protected structure, built to the design of Cork architect Henry Hill, who also worked on the Queen’s Old Castle, it must retain many of its original features, which Mr Kavanagh said they plan to respect.

The red-brick Victorian building has always served as a residential care home in a number of different ways including an asylum for “distressed females” and a self-catering home for elderly women.

More recently, the building was managed by O’Connell Court, which provided social housing for 16 vulnerable people on site.

Mr Kavanagh said that Cork Simon hopes to build more housing to facilitate those in long term homelessness in the future.

“We have an ambition to provide real and substantial housing that will have an impact,” Mr Kavanagh said.

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