The Minister for Housing has been told smaller gardens would be a 'game-changer' in solving Ireland's housing crisis.
Glenveagh Properties, one of the country's largest home builders, has presented a plan allowing developers to shave more than a quarter off the distance between the back of houses.
An existing 22-metre guideline from back-door to back-door dates back to the 1900s, when outhouses, fuel storage and vegetable growing were a common use of the space.
Glenveagh says reduction to 16 metres would lead to 'more supply and lower prices'.
In a statement, the developer says the "current framework favours unviable apartments with minimal outdoor space' and wants to 'meet the far greater demand for affordable and sustainable own door houses."
Dr Rory Hearne is an Assistant Professor of Social Policy at Maynooth, he said: "Will they pass the reduction onto homebuyers? I'd say do turkeys vote for Christmas. Of course not, a private developer is going to retain that as profit.
"I think it would be naive to think that changing garden sizes are going to lead to a reduction in house prices."