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VIEW editor Brian Pelan with the bike that was rode by this year’s Tour de France 2019 winner Egan Bernal McConvey Cycles on the Ormeau Road in Belfast was at the centre of attention today as hundreds of cyclists, including VIEW editor Brian Pelan, came to view the bike that Tour de France 2019 winner, Egan Bernal, rode this summer in the final stage of the race. The cycle store also today confirm an international deal with high-quality Italian bike manufacturer Pinarello who made the bike that Bernal rode. The business, owned by Eamon McConvey, is one of only two…

By Jane Corscadden and Una Murphy Pop Up Park set up following the Primark fire in Belfast city centre – Image: Mal McCann BELFAST councillors and voluntary groups have welcomed research into permanently pedestrianising more parts of the city centre. The council’s pop-up play parks set up following the Primark fire in the historic Bank Buildings last year were a big hit with the public. Now councillors want to find out if more permanent city centre space for pedestrians is feasible. Thousands of people signed a petition calling on Belfast City Council and other agencies to reconsider when the city…

Marie-Therese Davis-Hanson, a year round sea swimmer, easily and quickly checking the water quality results and event information for her day out at the beach, on the new app.’ The €1m EU funded SWIM (System for Bathing Water Quality Monitoring) Project has launched its pilot app, for beach-lovers to use at nine designated cross-border beaches. The app aims to provide users with information on water quality and local events. SWIM combines the expertise of University College Dublin, Agri-Food & Biosciences Institute and Keep Northern Ireland Beautiful. The app will make it quick and simple for users to access bathing water…

Ummi Hoque, an 18-year-old student who received National Lottery funding to help drive climate action in her local community, and who recently joined the hundreds of thousands of young people around the world striking together for climate action The National Lottery Community Fund today launched a new £100 million Climate Action Fund that will enable people and communities to take the lead in tackling the climate emergency. The new fund, from the largest funder of community activity in the UK, will build a network of people and communities, well-placed to drive change within, between and beyond their community. The funder…

Some of those present at the print launch in Dublin The front cover of the VIEW issue which looked at the housing crisis in the Republic of Ireland VIEWdigital launched its print edition of VIEW magazine, which looked at the housing crisis in the Republic of Ireland, at an event in Dublin yesterday. VIEW editor Brian Pelan, VIEWdigital co-founder Una Murphy and VIEW deputy editor Kathryn Johnson welcomed a range of people and organisations who came to the launch, which was held at the Royal Society of Antiquaries building in Merrion Square. Among those who attended were homelessness campaigner Fr…

Tom Gilligan Tom Gilligan, Director of Services at Mayo County Council, explains how the Vacant Homes initiative is helping to address the housing shortage and breathing new life back into communities VacantHomes.ie, the innovative website initiated by Mayo County Council on behalf of the local government sector, is going from strength to strength. Bringing empty units back into use benefits property owners, people with a housing need, the local economy, climate change and also helps protect local services. It’s a no brainer and a win-win for everyone. By utilising existing housing stock, the supply of accommodation increases and this helps…

Frank McDonald Frank McDonald, author, journalist and former Environment Editor of the Irish Times, talks to VIEW editor Brian Pelan about the influence of Margaret Thatcher on Irish social housing policy and how we can learn from other cities in Europe I met former Irish Times journalist Frank McDonald at his home which is situated in the heart of Dublin’s Temple Bar quarter. The author of several books on Dublin’s built environment was in sparkling form as he outlined his critique of the present Government’s housing policy and how other European cities have been much more imaginative when it came…

Orla Hegarty By Orla Hegarty, Assistant Professor in the School of Architecture, Planning and Environmental Policy at University College Dublin Perhaps the worst thing that could happen is that we start to think of the housing crisis as a perennial (or worse, a ‘wicked’) problem; one that can be alleviated but never solved. Problems that continue can too easily become normalised. Over the last five years, the challenges have become more acute and are most visible in the rising numbers who are without any home. Five years ago, there were 2,500 homeless people in Ireland and today this stands at…

Winner: VIEW editor Brian Pelan VIEW editor Brian Pelan and VIEWdigital co-founder Una Murphy attended yesterday’s Participatory Budgeting Works Imagine Democracy Celebration event at the Crescent Arts Centre in Belfast. They joined other winners who successfully pitched at an Imagine Democracy event earlier this year – which was part of the Imagine Belfast Festival. VIEW editor Brian Pelan, who secured £500 to help organise a VIEWdigital ‘Engaged Journalism’ event at the Belfast campus of the Ulster University, said he was delighted to take part in yesterday’s event at the Crescent Arts Centre. “Our event at Ulster University give participants a…

Stuart Kyle, his son Dylan (10) and Autism NI’s CEO Kerry Boyd Get your wetsuit and swimming cap at the ready and join Autism NI’s CEO Kerry Boyd, parent Stuart and his son Dylan Kyle on Sunday, September 1, as Autism NI hold their ‘Swimathon’ at Let’s Go Hydro in Carryduff. Autism NI CEO Kerry Boyd said: “We are absolutely delighted to hold our first ‘Swimathon’ and I can’t wait to take on the challenge myself. This will be a fun event for swimmers at all levels and an opportunity for participants to show support for the autism community.” Parent Stuart…

Fianna Fail TD Darragh O’Brien Darragh O’Brien and I sat across from each other in a small private room in the Dail in Dublin. The Fianna Fail spokesperson on housing was eager from the start to give me his party’s views on the housing crisis in the Republic of Ireland. Why housing? was my first question to him. “I was in foreign affairs for over two years and then we had a reshuffle last year. Our party leader Micheál Martin asked me to take over housing, planning and local government. “I’m delighted that I have this position as the issue…

Sinn Fein TD Eoin Ó Broin Eoin Ó Broin is passionate and outspoken about the need for a huge increase in public housing to tackle the crisis in Ireland. The Sinn Fein TD, who represents the Dublin mid-West constituency, has just written a new book, Home: Why Public Housing Is The Answer, to further promote his arguments, . I caught up with him recently at the Dail and started off our interview by asking him: “What does social housing mean to you?” “The first thing is that it is housing provided by local authorities and approved housing bodies. It is…

FIONA CASSIM Fiona Cassim, who is married, works as a billing administrator and part-time contributor for the Irish Times and Irish Independent, says she is part of ‘generation rent’ in the Republic of Ireland, born into a society which is ‘hell-bent on home ownership, and yet the majority of us are still renting’ In recent years, the Republic of Ireland has been dominated by the words ‘housing crisis’. Where once the topic of homelessness would not have found its way into the media, now it screams from the headlines. To be homeless is simply to be without a home, something…

John O’Connor John O’Connor, Chief Executive of the Housing Agency, believes that cost rental can deliver on much needed secure and affordable housing in the Republic of Ireland The idea of cost rental has been in the media a lot recently. It is a model where the rents charged are linked to the cost of delivering and maintaining the properties, as opposed to being linked to market rents. It aims to ensure that homes are affordable for households with a moderate level of income. This model has been used, for example, in Austria for the last century. It is considered…

Clanmil Housing is celebrating its 5,000th home after successfully transforming a 101-year-old listed building on Durham Street, Belfast, into apartments. The restoration was part of a £3.3million housing scheme providing a total of 23 homes. The development, which was part funded by the Department for Communities, has given the previously derelict listed building a future. Clanmil Group Chief Executive Clare McCarty said: “Reaching the 5,000 homes milestone is testimony to the hard work and dedication of our fantastic team and the valuable input of our partners. “For this project we have worked closely with local political representatives and St Mary’s…

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