Asylum seekers to be 'housed' in tents at former Central Mental Hospital
Temporary accommodation in the form of tents is set to be provided for asylum seekers at Dundrum's former Central Mental Hospital.
The move comes as the government struggles to cope with the surge in refugee numbers entering the State, with suitable housing solutions becoming increasingly tougher to come by.
According to The Irish Times, there are now plans in place to house up to 176 asylum seekers on the grounds of the out-of-use hospital in South Dublin up until September.
The solution is thought to be a feasible one given the predicted warm summer temperatures, with showering and cooking facilities to be provided inside the old hospital buildings.
Despite the decision by the government to implement temporary housing on the grounds of the hospital, it is still believed that the planned development of the land into 852 residential properties will still occur.
The site was one of several which received Cabinet approval back in March to be utilised as temporary refugee accommodation, however, up until this point asylum seekers have not been housed on its grounds.
With a similar configuration of tents already being implemented at Columb Barracks in Mullingar, the government hopes to relieve some of the strain being placed on the emergency accommodation system.
This strain was made all the more evident to the public on Thursday when the Cabinet agreed to pay the European Union a settlement fee of approximately €1.5 million, rather than accept an additional 350 Ukrainian refugees as part of a wider EU relocation programme.
The site of the former Central Mental Hospital, which opened originally back in 1850, was finally vacated by the HSE last February as they moved the facility to Portrane in North Dublin.