Over 50 new social houses in Kilfennan have been approved at a special meeting of Derry City and Strabane District Council.
Choice Housing Ireland’s plans to build 35 general needs houses, two complex needs bungalows, one complex needs apartment and five general needs apartments, alongside an associated development of a further eight social housing units next door, were given the green light on Tuesday.
The housing development, located between Rossdale, Kilfennan Valley Park and Nelson Drive, will be accessible on foot via the latter.
During the meeting the Council’s head of planning, Maura Fox, said the developers believed the homes would help meet the Northern Ireland Housing Executive’s (NIHE) projected social housing need in the ‘Waterside 2’ housing area, which includes Kilfennan, Caw and Nelson Drive.
She said NIHE projects 158 social housing units are needed in the area between 2017 and 2022.
Members welcomed the development but some questioned NIHE’s projections of need.
SDLP councillor Tina Gardiner suggested 158 units did not meet the need members were encountering in clinics and on the doorsteps when speaking to their constituents. DUP Alderman Hilary McClintock and Sinn Féin councillor Christopher Jackson agreed the social housing need was great in the Waterside. Colr. Jackson said even more social housing builds are required in other parts of the Waterside.