17th May (Issue 347)

Welcome to the Origin Capital Weekly Irish Property Review. This update is designed to provide you with a full recap of the latest property news from the media over the last seven days.




Stephen’s Green, Dublin 2 Developer David Daly’s October Investments is bringing 16 Stephen’s Green to the capital’s prime office market. Having served for many years as the corporate headquarters of the ESB, no. 16 has undergone a sensitive restoration and redevelopment to provide a state-of-the-art office building capable of accommodating more than 350 workers. The original Georgian building extends to more than 9,000 sq. ft. over four floors and is connected at the rear to a newly constructed seven-storey building of 30,220 sq. ft. through interconnecting glass corridors on four levels. There are shower facilities at basement level, 10 car spaces and bicycle parking for up to 56 bikes. The Irish Times, 11th May

Sir John Rogerson’s Quay, Dublin 2 Global investor services provider IQ-EQ has selected 76 Sir John Rogerson’s Quay as the location for its new Irish headquarters. News of the move comes just one week after the company secured formal approval from the Central Bank for its purchase of Davy’s fund services business, Davy Global Fund Management. IQ-EQ has agreed to lease 9,700 sq. ft. on the fifth floor of 76 Sir John Rogerson’s Quay. The deal was handled by Savills Ireland. Other tenants in situ at the scheme include Rabobank, Algebris Investments and Trinseo. Developed by TIO (Targeted Investment Opportunities, an umbrella fund involving Nama, Los Angeles-based Oaktree Capital and Bennett Construction), 76 Sir John Rogerson’s Quay comprises 92,600 sq. ft. of grade A office space distributed across two blocks. The Irish Times, 11th May

BNP Paribas Real Estate Report A two-tier market is emerging for Dublin’s office rental market as a new post-Covid working environment emerges, a new report from BNP Paribas Real Estate shows. The report says rents are rising again for brand new, high-spec offices in prime locations, but older buildings are not faring as well. It points out that increasing vacancy rates on older buildings, which represent the majority of the capital’s office stock, means average lease terms and rents are more favourable for tenants across the office market. The report says that 484,376 sq. ft. of office space was leased in the capital in the first quarter of 2022. That represents a ten-fold improvement on a trough seen in the first three months of 2021, and the trend is improving, it adds. But it also points out that office space take-up remains “well down” on historical averages. Despite that, more than 1,076,391 sq. ft. of new office space has already come onto the market in Dublin this year, with the total for 2022 likely to be c. 2,583,338 sq. ft. That, notes the report, will make 2022 the biggest year for office completions in Dublin since 2008. BNP Paribas Real Estate Report, 13th May

South Docklands, Dublin Blackstone is preparing to launch a €100m+ sale from a Dublin office portfolio it bought from Starwood Capital in 2019. CBRE has been instructed to sell the Watermarque building, an office that is majority leased to Google and Pfizer. Watermarque, considered one of the jewels of the Cedar portfolio, totals 107,500 sq. ft. and is fully occupied. Just over 80% of the building’s income comes from Google and Pfizer, with both tenants having renovated their space in the past two years. Located in Dublin’s south Docklands, the building is also home to Unipol and News UK. Blackstone has also invested significant capex to upgrade the asset. The asset provides a WAULT of 7.8 years to breaks and over 10 years to expiry. Pfizer didn’t exercise a recent break option, committing to another 10 years. The average passing rent of the building is €47 per sq. ft., a figure significantly below Dublin’s new headline rent. The majority of space in Watermarque has rent reviews either outstanding or due in 2023. React News, 10th May

St James’s Gate, Dublin 8 Property developer Ballymore is to submit a planning application to repurpose the Brewhouse 2 building at the St James’s Gate brewery in central Dublin into a modern office space that will become a new headquarters at the site for Diageo, the international drinks group that owns Guinness. The building, which was once part of Guinness’s brewery operations, will extend to just under 13,000 sq. ft., with Diageo as the anchor tenant. Permission for the multimillion-euro project will be sought from Dublin City Council. Refurbishing the building will also facilitate the wider redevelopment at St James’s Gate site by freeing up buildings where Diageo staff currently operate. Subject to planning approval being granted, it is expected that construction of Brewhouse 2 will take c. three years to complete. The Irish Times, 16th May



Santry, Dublin 9 The UK-headquartered industrial developer and asset manager Chancerygate has entered the Irish market with a €4.5m deal for a five-acre site on the Swords Road in Santry. The transaction, which it completed with its longstanding investment partner, Bridges Fund Management, represents Chancery’s first investment outside the UK. Subject to planning permission, the joint venture partners intend to speculatively develop 114,000 sq. ft. of grade A urban logistics and warehouse space on the site. The proposed accommodation will be distributed across 14 units ranging in size from 3,500 sq. ft. to 20,675 sq. ft. All the units will be available leasehold and once complete, the development will have a gross development value of c. €35m. A planning application for the proposed development will be submitted to Fingal County Council within the coming weeks. The Irish Times, 11th May

Rathcoole, Co Dublin Lyreco, a French multinational distributor of workplace products and services, has just completed the letting of Unit 601 Greenogue Business Park in Rathcoole, Co Dublin. Industrial and logistics specialist Harvey represented Lyreco in the negotiations, while JLL acted for the developer EQT Exeter. Lyreco has signed a 15-year lease at a rent in excess of €10 per sq. ft. The tenant is responsible for all repairs and insurance, and the lease incorporates a tenant break option after 10 years. A pre-letting had been agreed with the developer during the construction phase, and the building recently reached practical completion. Comprising 54,343 sq. ft of 12.5m high warehousing, the building also includes 7,655 sq. ft. of three-storey offices. The Irish Times, 11th May

Ballycoolin, Dublin 15 With completion of units 628 and 637 at Northwest Logistics Park in Ballycoolin, Dublin 15, now just three months away, joint agents Savills and CBRE are seeking occupiers for both properties on the basis of an annual rent of €10.90 per sq. ft. Developed by Michael Cotter’s Park Developments, the units extend to 41,020 sq. ft. and 119,233 sq. ft. respectively. The company recently submitted planning applications for the construction of a further 1,076,391 sq. ft. of logistics space at the scheme. Over 75% of this accommodation has already been accounted for by leases or pre-lettings. While the latest units – 628 and 637 – will be ready for occupation by the third quarter of this year, buildings of up to 538,195 sq. ft. can alternatively be provided on a design-and-build basis. The Irish Times, 11th May



N4 Axis Centre, Co Longford A tranche of retail park investment units in Co Longford is being offered for sale with a €6.75m guide price. Selling agents TWM say this price reflects a NIY of 8.45% off the rent of €627k pa. The property comprises eight units in three blocks at the N4 Axis Centre in Longford. Three of the units are let to Homestore & More, Maxi Zoo and Argos – the anchor occupiers at the retail park. The eight have combined floor areas totalling 73,098 sq. ft. Each of the units is generating rent and 70% of the total rent comes from Homestore + More, Argos, Maxi Zoo and Halfords. The sale also includes a vacant yard which had been a garden centre and which could provide potential to add value to the investment. The three blocks in the sale are being sold by receivers PwC. The Irish Independent, 12th May

Debenhams Stores, Cork and Dublin Receivers Grant Thornton have been appointed by Bank of Ireland to oversee the sale of two former flagship stores previously occupied by British retail giant Debenhams, in Cork and Dublin. They include the St Patrick’s Street premises in Cork city, an iconic building on the main shopping street, which operated as Roches Stores before the Roche family leased it to Debenhams in 2006. The second premises, also owned by companies associated with the Roche family, is on Dublin’s Henry St. Accounts filed for 2019 by Dooroy Ltd, a Roche-associated company, said the group of which Dooroy is a member was “in breach of numerous covenants” in relation to Bank of Ireland loans and that “a standstill agreement” signed with the bank had expired. The Irish Examiner, 12th May



Ronan Group Real Estate (RGRE) is understood to have secured a commitment from a leading bank to refinance a prime property portfolio valued at €300m. News of the agreement comes at the same time as Savills readies five of the portfolio’s 12 assets for sale on behalf of receivers appointed by M&G Investments in March. The UK-based investment group is owed €141m arising from its backing of RGRE’s refinancing of Nama loans in 2015. Were the agreement to falter however, the developer faces the immediate prospect of five prime properties including Bewley’s flagship premises on Grafton Street and Connaught House on Burlington Road being sold with the proceeds being used to repay M&G. The three other properties being readied for sale comprise Permanent TSB’s branch building at 70 Grafton Street, the premises of handmade cosmetics brand Lush at 116 Grafton Street and Kingram House on Fitzwilliam Place. While the five properties carry a combined guide price of €170m, or just under 57% of the value attributed to the entire portfolio, each asset would have its own separate sales process with the exception of the three Grafton Street properties which would be offered in one or more lots. The Irish Times, 11th May

Stillorgan, South Dublin Cairn Homes has submitted a SHD Application to build a €79m mixed-use residential scheme on the former Blakes and Esmond Motors site in Stillorgan in south Dublin. The scheme will consist of 377 BTR apartments together with a 10,043 sq. ft. community sports hall, five restaurant/cafés units spanning 9,052 sq. ft., a 2,314 sq. ft. crèche, 2,099 sq. ft. of office space and more than 10,764 sq. ft. of residents’ support facilities/services all laid out in six blocks ranging in height from three to nine stories over basement level. The Business Post, 15th May

Dundrum, Dublin 14 Dundrum Retail Limited Partnership has lodged an application for a €184m mixed apartment/commercial development at a site incorporating the old Dundrum Shopping Centre just off Main Street, Dundrum, Dublin 14. The proposed scheme will include 881 apartments, a retail food store, retail unit, cafe, restaurant and a crèche facility and permission is sought for a period of eight years to coincide with the construction programme. The Business Post, 15th May



Island Street, Dublin 8 Pathway Homes’ planned project for a €3.6m hostel development with 49 bedrooms at 34 Island Street in Dublin 8 has been refused. The scheme would have incorporated the repair and refurbishment of a protected building and the construction of a five/six-storey hostel scheme. The Business Post, 15th May



Omeath, Co Louth ML Quinn Construction has been given permission for a €17m nursing home development at Tain Holiday Village in Omeath, Co Louth. The development will see an extension of 65,025 sq. ft. to the permitted nursing home alongside dining facilities, staff facilities and a community day care clinic. The Business Post, 15th May



Stoneybatter, Dublin 7 Works are expected to begin shortly on the construction of a new €16m student residential building in Dublin 7. Built by Manchester-based developer, CSD (Stoneybatter), the project on Manor Road consists of two adjoining blocks, one three-storey block and a six-storey block. Unit sizes range from a studio to eight-bedroom units, making up 142 bedrooms in total. The Business Post, 15th May



Ringsend, Dublin 4 A residential development site in Ringsend, Dublin 4, with full planning permission for 26 residential units by the Liffey is being offered for sale with a €3m guide price (€115k per site). Extending to 0.18 acres, the site is located on York Road, three kilometres east of Dublin city centre. The planning permission allows for a seven-storey project with 13 one-bedroom apartments and 13 two-bedroom apartments, ranging in size from 516 sq. ft. to 840 sq. ft. respectively. Currently a two-storey commercial premises extending to 8,073 sq. ft. occupies the site. The Irish Independent, 12th May

Kilkenny A sizeable brownfield site in Kilkenny city centre is being offered for sale with a guide price in excess of €6m. Extending to 8.57 acres, the site was previously occupied by Kilkenny mart before the livestock services relocated outside the city. A 12-screen multiplex cinema opened adjacent to the site and planning for a new hotel is also in motion close by. Joint agents Savills and Bagnall Doyle MacMahon are handling the sale. The site is currently zoned ‘general business’ – “to provide for general development”. The Irish Independent, 12th May

Howth, Co Dublin Two north Dublin TDs are among those to express concerns over the planned demolition of the Baily Court Hotel in Howth to make way for a €63m apartment scheme. More than 50 objections have been lodged by locals against Balscadden GP3 Ltd’s fast-track scheme that is to be made up of four residential blocks ranging in height from two to five storeys. It will also have two retail units and one cafe/retail unit. As part of the proposal, the developer has put an indicative price tag of €6.3m on the sale of 18 apartments to Fingal County Council to comply with its social housing obligations. A two-bed apartment has the indicative price of €657k. The overall scheme is made up of four studios, 62 one-bed units, 89 two-bed apartments and 24 three-bed units. An appeals board decision is due in July. The Irish Times, 13th May

Terenure, Dublin 12 In an objection to fast-track plans by Lioncor Developments subsidiary 1 Terenure Land Ltd for the 208-unit, six-storey apartment scheme, a prominent Sinn Féin TD has claimed that opposition to a €106m apartment scheme for Terenure in Dublin “is not nimbyism”. More than 75 objections have been lodged against the scheme for lands beside the Ben Dunne Carlisle Gym, Kimmage Road West, Terenure, Dublin 12. The scheme is comprised of 104 one-bed apartments and 104 two-bed apartments. The developers have put an indicative price tag of €10.66m on 21 apartments to be sold to Dublin City Council for social housing. The Part V documentation lodged with the scheme puts an indicative price of €668.2k on one two-bedroom unit. An Bord Pleanála is due to make a decision on the application in July. The Irish Times, 11th May

Malahide, Co Dublin Bryan Lynam’s Cladewell Estates has submitted an application to build 100 residential units in a mix of houses, duplex, own-door apartments and apartment buildings ranging in height from two to four storeys overall in Malahide, Co Dublin. The scheme has a total floor area of 113,204 sq. ft. and an estimated cost of €22m. The Business Post, 15th May

Santry, Dublin 9 Cosgrave Developments has submitted a planning request for 255 apartments in Santry, Dublin 9. The development will comprise 11 one-bed, 229 two-bed and 15 three-bed units. The total floor area of the proposed development is 277,730 sq. ft., and the estimated build cost is €54m. The Business Post, 15th May

Swords, Co Dublin Gannon Homes is seeking permission to build 377 residential units in Oldtown in Swords, Co Dublin. The €72m development will comprise 173 houses and 204 apartment units spanning an area of 372,345 sq. ft. The Business Post, 15th May

Ennis, Co Clare Cash-strapped Clare GAA is proposing to rezone its headquarters to allow residential development, as it seeks to address long-running financial problems. Sources in Clare say the county board could raise in excess of €1m by selling its administrative HQ and an adjoining pitch on the southern outskirts of Ennis if they are rezoned for development. In a submission to Clare county council’s draft development plan, KPMG Future Analytics said on behalf of Clare GAA management committee that it wanted to change the land’s zoning to residential from its current designations of recreation and car parks. The Sunday Times, 15th May

Swords, North Co Dublin The Christian Brothers and a Bailey brother – builder Michael – are seeking planning changes to bring forward housing developments on their adjoining lands near Swords in north Co Dublin. Mr. Bailey’s company Bovale and the Catholic order have engaged the same consultants to make separate submissions to Fingal County Council on a development plan that will guide new housing in the region for the rest of the decade. Bovale, which still has significant National Asset Management Agency debts, has told Fingal council that c. 7,000 dwellings could be built on its 142-acre site at Lissenhall over 10 years. The submission was one of three from the company last week. Bovale asked the local authority for zoning to allow “new residential communities” on its 63-acre lands at St Doolagh’s in Dublin 17. It also sought “metro economic corridor” zoning from the council on 9.7 acres of its 27.5 acres at Barrysparks, near Swords. The Christian Brothers own 10.7 acres at Lissenhall within the centre of Bovale’s lands there. The Irish Times, 17th May



Blackpool Developments Creditors recently appointed accountant Aidan Heffernan of Hitchmough Kinnear and Company as liquidator of Blackpool Developments, a property firm part-owned by businessmen Clayton and Neil Love. The company developed Blackpool Shopping Centre in Cork, which was sold for €116m in 2014, to clear liabilities to one of its main creditors, the State’s National Asset Management Agency (Nama). Creditors appointed Mr. Heffernan as liquidator at a meeting on May 6th, documents filed with the Companies Registration Office show. The company’s most recent accounts show that it had liabilities of €33.65m at the end of 2020. It also held investment properties valued at €4.6m. Accounts for previous years state that Blackpool Shopping Centre had been its main asset and source of income. The Irish Times, 10th May


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