A new manual is being launched today, outlining how vacant buildings in towns across the country could help to tackle the housing crisis.

The junior Housing Minister Damien English will be in Athlone to launch the new manual, setting out how empty commercial spaces could be redeveloped as homes.

He says town centres contain a large amount of underused properties - including unused floors above retail premises, and the reuse of such space must be encouraged to increase the supply of new homes.

Minister English says this would help improve the supply of quality housing - while also rejuvenating town centres and city streets:

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