The number of homeless children in the city of Dublin has more than doubled in the past year.
To combat what is rapidly becoming an emergency situation, the Irish government is making an emergency push to provide 500 modular homes to families without a place to live.
When announcing the unprecedented move recently, Alan Kelly, Ireland’s housing minister, said that the Irish housing crisis was the largest issue facing the country.
The urgency is so high that a tender notice was issued, specifying that the government wants 22 three-bedroom homes to be built in Dublin before the Christmas holidays arrive.
The Irish Times reported that 128 more homes will be constructed soon afterwards, followed by an additional 350 under a national framework valued at €40million.
Mr Kelly said that the recession had damaged the housing market in Dublin, and the sector simply is not rallying quickly enough to accommodate demand.
He confirmed that as a temporary measure, the government will be funding the construction and delivery of 500 modular homes for Dublin families who are struggling with homelessness.
According to figures submitted by the Dublin Region Homeless Executive, during the week of September 21 - 27, there were 637 families (with a combined total of 1,343 children) in emergency housing in Dublin. This is more than double the figures collected in September 2014.
The executive said that on any given night last September, more than 400 families were seeking shelter in commercial hotels throughout the Dublin region.
The tender notice stated that the first 22 modular units will be three-bedroom, two-storey homes for five people. The plan is for them to be ready for occupation by mid-December.
The tender notice stated that this initiative will be a “pilot for the design, manufacture, supply of rapid delivery housing units”.