ULI Members Play Affordable Housing Game in Dublin

ULI Ireland members recently gathered in Dublin to play the first version of ULI Europe’s affordable housing game. The game, developed by Play the City in partnership with ULI Europe, ULI Ireland and the Irish Housing Agency, was designed to bring together all types of stakeholders in the Dublin housing sector to to address local challenges in a neutral, unique environment.

Dublin currently faces substantial issues around affordability. Research by Play the City found that renters in the centre of Dublin pay an average of 48% of their income in rent. While the city has a strong supply of social housing, there is a serious shortage of affordable housing for those who cannot access social housing but still struggle to pay market rates. The game challenged the players to think through the implications of possible scenarios through which they might increase the quality, quantity, and affordability of housing in the city region.

Working with the Housing Agency, Play the City created a game board that identified sites currently in public sector ownership that could be locations for affordable housing developments. During the game, players selected sites, put together multi-disciplinary teams, and prepared proposals for affordable housing projects. Players introduced a variety of strategies, including new regulations and subsidies, to explore the conditions that would make their proposals viable.

The game, part of a project funded by an Urban Innovation Grant from the ULI Foundation, was the first of three that will be played around Europe this year. The next game will be in Amsterdam in September 2017, and the last in Bordeaux in November 2017. ULI and Play the City hope to run further games in additional cities.

For more information, or if you are interested in partnering with ULI Europe and Play the City to run a similar game in your city, contact Elizabeth.rapoport@uli.org.