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Eyesore city flats are to be bulldozed

DUBLIN'S most dilapidated housing blocks are to be demolished to make way for a long sought regeneration scheme.

The 14 blocks at St Teresa's Gardens in Dublin's south inner city have fallen into disrepair with problems with sewerage and damp.

Anti-social behaviour and drug use is rife around the housing complex.

After year's of campaigning, a proposal for the first step towards the regeneration of this estate in Dolphin's Barn was approved at last night's Dublin City Council meeting.

The council's executive manager for housing services Peter Ayton acknowledged that the flats in question were "very badly damaged" and sources of "anti-social behaviour".

Sinn Fein councillor Criona Ni Dhalaigh said the demolition of the 1950s housing complex was "very welcome" but reiterated that conditions in St Teresa's Gardens were still appalling and would need funds from the environment department to rejuvenate the area.

Mr Ayton assured Cllr Ni Dhalaigh that regeneration plans were moving ahead.

He said the council had plans to show local residents but that it would be sometime before a masterplan would be finalised.

The plan centres around replacing the old complex with a smaller number of more sustainable housing units.

The original regeneration plans for the estate was to demolish all current accommodation and replace it with 300 social and affordable units, 300 private apartments, retail and commercial units, and community buildings.

But the plans fell through after bidders for the Public Private Partnership scheme pulled out in 2009.

A housing survey in 2010 found that nearly half of St Teresa's residents wanted to be moved out immediately.

As well as reporting problems with sewage and damp, rat infestations were reported in nine of the 14 units surveyed.