Johnstown Residents Urgent!

At a Johnstown Community Association (JCA) meeting on Wednesday, September 2nd, it was confirmed to residents in attendance that the new estate, Toberton Wood (site ref 18/585) has been signed over to Kildare County Council for 100% social housing (49 units) under the Enhanced Long Term Social Housing Leasing Scheme.
The council have entered into a lease agreement for 25 years with the developer, Ardstone Homes.

There has been NO attempt at consultation or communications from the community of Johnstown from either Kildare County Council or Ardstone homes. It would appear it has been a completely underhanded transaction. Toberton Wood’s 49 units puts social housing at approx. 12.5% of the total housing in Johnstown village. Under Part V of the Planning and Development Act 2000, 10% of houses within an estate are obliged to go to social housing. This should equate to 11 units in Ardstone’s two new developments – six in Furness Wood and five in Toberton Wood.

The JCA is supportive of Social Housing and agrees with Government backed documentation that this needs to be integrated in a streamlined way. To be clear, we
support current Government guidelines that say 10% of new private builds should be
reserved for social housing.In addition, site 19/841 which is currently seeking planning permission, has not been confirmed (in writing) that it will be sold as private dwellings. If this were the case then 20% of all housing in Johnstown would be social housing.

In the Social Housing Strategy 2020; Support, Supply and Reform document, it outlines how an integrated approach to social housing is a key factor in the development of such. It states that social housing should be delivered, not by way of large mono-tenure estates, but by ensuring that new social housing is provided in mixed tenure developments,
properly integrated with private residential schemes which will foster sustainable
communities. The above approach appears to be contradictory to what has been planned for Toberton Wood and site 19/841.

Johnstown, Co. Kildare is a village of approx. 1,000 people with little-to-no amenities. No schools, no sports pitches or fields, no park or playgrounds, no entertainment, no youth clubs and very little in the way of public transport. Contained within Johnstown is one convenience store and two restaurants. Three units in total for over 1,000 people. Kildare County Development Plan 2017-2023, states; ‘There is a lack of community facilities in the village and new community facilities should be provided in tandem with development’. What facilities are being provided in tandem with these new developments? A small
community like Johnstown with almost zero amenities cannot successfully integrate such large blocks of social housing.

What can you do?
Speed and timing is of the essence. Furness Wood residents have already begun taking action as of September 1st. If you would like to object to the above we would encourage you to:

Local Councillors and TD’s

Councillor Anne Breen Labour
Councillor Fintan Brett Fine Gael
Councillor Bill Clear Independent
Councillor Carmel Kelly Fianna Fail
Councillor Seamie Moore Independent
Councillor Evie Sammon Fine Gael
TD James Lawless Fianna Fail

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