I propose to take Questions Nos. 10 and 12 together.
I thank the Deputy for the question. Acknowledging that renters in Dublin and other urban centres are currently facing significant affordability challenges, this Government is committed to the introduction of an affordable, not-for-profit cost rental sector in Ireland. Together with delivering more affordable and predictable rents, cost rental will make a sustainable impact on national competitiveness and the attractiveness of our main urban centres as places to live and work.
Taking account of the expected population increase of almost 1 million extra people by 2040, we will need around 500,000 new homes over the next 20 years and the State must be proactive in identifying and delivering the types of new homes that our changing population will need. We need to offer something different to renters on moderate incomes in Dublin, who are currently facing average rents of over €1,500, and I believe the cost rental model can deliver just that. From the extensive debates on the issue in this House, I welcome the broad agreement on all sides that cost rental needs to form a significant part of our future housing system.
It is now crucial that we identify and support good projects to prove the cost rental concept in an Irish setting and to inform the development of a framework for further projects. In this regard, there are now two pilot cost rental schemes being advanced, one at Enniskerry Road, in Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown and one at St. Michael’s Estate, in Inchicore. It is expected that 50 affordable units and 105 social homes will be made available on the Enniskerry Road site, while the site at St. Michael's Estate can accommodate over 470 homes. While the final tenure mix on the Inchicore lands will be decided by Dublin City Council and informed by the detailed site development process, it will likely include 140 social housing homes, with the remaining 330 homes predominantly provided by the city council under cost rental arrangements.
The Enniskerry Road project has now gone to tender and it is anticipated that, once the procurement process is completed, construction will commence in the first quarter of 2019. With regard to St. Michael's Estate, while this project is at an early stage of development, Dublin City Council has appointed a dedicated project manager and a project team to drive the project forward. In addition to pre-existing consultative arrangements, the council is also facilitating the establishment of a special Inchicore regeneration consultative forum specifically for this project.
With regard to the funding arrangements, I have made it clear that direct Exchequer funding will be provided for any social housing element of these mixed-tenure developments. My Department is engaging directly with the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform, as part of the budgetary process, with regard to housing funding more generally. In addition, my Department is in regular discussion with the European Investment Bank with regard to financing options for the Inchicore project and also leveraging the bank's vast experience and knowledge in developing and supporting public housing projects in other member states.