Limerick students face housing 'crisis'

FORUM: CLLR PRENDIVILLE CALLS ON COUNCIL AND THIRD LEVEL INSTITUTIONS TO HOLD TALKS

Fintan Walsh

Reporter:

Fintan Walsh

Limerick students face housing 'crisis'

Cllr Prendiville calls on council and third level institutions to establish a forum to discuss student accommodation

LIMERICK city councillor Cian Prendiville has this week called on third level institutions and Limerick City and County Council officials to discuss provisions for “more affordable, quality student accommodation”.

At this week’s metropolitan district meeting, the Anti-Austerity Alliance councillor said that the current accommodation “crisis” has let students with no homes in the first few weeks of college.

“In the first week, there were some students who were, effectively, homeless. One student, whom I was speaking to, had to travel all the way from Galway to University of Limerick. That is madness,” he said.

He said that houses that were once €65 are now €150 per week. He added that a number of landlords are demanding advanced yearly payments, which often add up to €5,000.

The council’s senior project manager, Seamus Hanrahan said that it is “supportive of establishing a forum to afford an opportunity for the different sectors to exchange views on the challenges and opportunities relating to student accommodation” in the city.

As part of the Rebuilding Ireland action plan for housing and homelessness, the council will work with organisations to “prioritise and progress viable projects” in key urban areas, at the end of this year.

By the end of the year, a funding mechanism will be established for Limerick Institute of Technology to support the development of student accommodation.

At the end of 2016, an assessment will be carried for the provision of additional student accommodation on local authority- and publicly-owned lands.