1st March (Issue 336)

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.




North Wall Quay, Dublin 1 US bank Citi is reviewing options of up to 200,000 sq. ft. for a new headquarters in Dublin. Currently based in the city’s Dockland, it is understood to have issued request for proposals (RFPs) to developers for city centre and suburban sites. The group’s Dublin-based unit Citibank Europe became its main banking entity in the European Union in early 2016, after the activities of its Citibank International unit in the UK were folded into the Dublin-based business. Knight Frank is advising Citi with the size of the requirement expected to settle between 150,000 sq. ft. and 200,000 sq. ft. Citi could also consider taking two separate offices, with one in the centre and the second in an out-of-town location. The bank has form in owning, rather than letting or pre-letting, its real estate around the globe. Citi owns its current Dublin office, the 200,000 sq. ft. 1 North Wall Quay. React News, 24th February

Spencer Dock, Dublin Lisney is advising the Central Bank of Ireland in bringing to the market Block R in Spencer Dock at a guide price of €105m. The building’s east and west wings, which are self-contained, are alternatively being offered in individual lots at guide prices of €55m and €50m respectively. Block R extends to a total area of 127,817 sq. ft. The majority of the east wing (53,856 sq. ft. distributed across the ground to fifth floor, and 18 car spaces) is let to the Office of Public Works (OPW) under a 20-year lease from May 2015, at a newly agreed passing rent of €2.636m pa, which equates to €48 per sq. ft., plus €3.75k pa per car space. The OPW lease contains a break option which is effective in May 2027. The sixth floor of the east wing (6,319 sq. ft.) is set to be occupied upon completion of the sale by the CBI on a short-term lease until September 2022 at a contracted rent of €323.95k pa. The retail unit at ground-floor level (2,481 sq. ft.) is currently vacant.
In the case of the west wing (65,161 sq. ft.), the CBI has committed to renting the ground to six floors (58,516 sq. ft.) and 23 car parking spaces on a short-term lease until September 2022 upon completion of the sale. The contracted rent in this instance equates to €3.0178m pa. Tesco Ireland, meanwhile, has recently signed a 20-year lease on the west wing’s two retail units, with break options in years 10 and 15. Tesco has agreed to pay a rent of €166.125k pa, or €25 per sq. ft. The Irish Times, 23rd February

Naas, Co Kildare The Osprey Hotel in Naas, Co Kildare, has launched the Osprey Hub, a co-working space. It incorporates 22 self-contained booths and desk spaces with access to soundproof pods for confidential calls and digital pedestals where people can securely store files or belongings. There are also boardrooms which can be hired for private meetings. Open daily from 8am to 8pm, the hub also has free parking, super-fast, fibre wifi and offers users unlimited data usage. Prices start from €25 plus Vat to hire a desk for the day, which includes free parking and complimentary tea and coffee. The Osprey Hub now joins the government’s initiative to promote connected hubs all around Ireland which will be used to build capacity and enhance existing remote working facilities. The Business Post, 27th February

Dublin Docklands Denis O’Brien’s Jepview has secured planning permission for a 15 storey office block in Dublin’s docklands. Jepview Ltd got the green light for the scheme at Two Grand Canal Quay after revising its original plans – which had envisaged a 15-storey high office block and a second eight-storey unit – in response to Dublin City Council expressing concerns over the scale of the proposal. Jepview sought planning permission for the 15-storey office block after acquiring the site through a swap deal with Trinity College Dublin. No objections were lodged against the scheme. As part of the conditions attached to the permission, the city council is requiring that Jepview pays €1.54m in planning contributions towards public infrastructure. The site currently comprises a single storey warehouse which extends to the full area of the site. The Irish Times, 28th February



Dundalk, Co Louth The Ballymascanlon House Hotel in Dundalk, Co Louth, has been acquired by Davy Real Estate for the TMR Hotel Collection, the portfolio of four- and five-star hotels assembled by Austrian investor Thomas Roggla. Market sources reveal that the TMR Hotel Collection has paid c. €15m to secure ownership of the property. The TMR collection includes Harveys Point, Aghadoe Heights, Connemara Coast Hotel, Mount Wolseley and Farnham Estate. The hotel itself comprises 97 bedrooms and is set on 130 acres of parkland. The Irish Times, 22nd February

Temple Bar, Dublin 2 Just four years on from its €8m acquisition of the then 171-bed Barnacles Hostel from the MHL Hotel Collection, MM Capital is offering the property to the market through JLL at a guide price of €11m. The Temple Bar Lane as it is now known has been refurbished and repositioned as a 36-key boutique hotel. The property is being offered for sale with freehold and equivalent long-leasehold title and the benefit of full vacant possession. The sale also includes a ground-floor cafe unit on Cecilia Street (tenant not affected). The Irish Times, 23rd February

For lending terms on this asset please contact rossmetcalfe@origincapital.ie

Ballsbridge, Dublin 4 JLL is guiding €5m for the Waterloo House guesthouse in Ballsbridge, Dublin 4. The 21-guestroom townhouse is being offered for sale with the benefit of freehold title and vacant possession. The property offers spacious accommodation in a prime location next to the Grand Canal. While Waterloo House retains numerous of its original period features, it also has a guest lift serving all floors. The rear garden, which houses the dining room and conservatory, offers expansionary potential (subject to planning permission). The Irish Times, 23rd February

For lending terms on this asset please contact rossmetcalfe@origincapital.ie



Killarney Outlet Centre Nike, the flagship factory outlet store of the Killarney Outlet Centre, is to close in two weeks with business moving online. Reports of uncertainty have been circulating since Christmas and that a review into operations was taking place. However, the decision to close the store, which has been a major attraction in the centre and with the loss of over twenty jobs, has come as a shock. The Outlet Centre comprising 90,492 sq. ft. of retail accommodation and almost 40 units remains on the market by owners Green Properties. The retail building on a 5.14-acre site is alongside Killarney bus and train stations. Other tenants include Costa Coffee, DV8, The Works, Tiger and Pavers. The Irish Examiner, 22nd February

Stoneybatter, Dublin 7 The Park Shopping Centre is being offered for sale as an investment and redevelopment opportunity by Cushman & Wakefield at a guide price of €11m. The property is an established multi-let centre of 19,991 sq. ft. set out on a 2.97 acre site, comprising 14 retail units and a single anchor store which is owner-occupied by Tesco (not included within the sale). Tenants at the scheme include Thunders Bakery, Park Pharmacy and Bodyfirm fitness studio. The investment also includes numbers 42, 43, 44 and 45 Prussia Street, with the entire portfolio delivering a current rent roll of €431k pa. In June 2021, the property received full planning permission for the development of a 578 bed-space student accommodation scheme, 32 BTR residential units, 11 retail units, two licensed cafe/restaurants and a part-licensed supermarket with 111 car parking spaces at podium level. The Irish Times, 23rd February

For lending terms on this asset please contact rossmetcalfe@origincapital.ie

Grafton and Henry Streets, Dublin Capital values on Grafton Street have plunged by c. €228m (40%) since the start of the pandemic. According to the latest MSCI/ SCSI Ireland property index, values on Ireland’s most expensive shopping street fell from €575.3m as of March 2020 to just €347.7m as of December 2021. With more than 20% of stores now vacant on the street, and a lack of certainty over others, the street has suffered from the dearth of both office workers and tourists in the past 24 months. The index covered 39 properties in March 2020 and two fewer, at 37, in December 2021; however, this isn’t enough of a difference to explain the sharp fall in values on the street. It’s a similar story on nearby Henry Street, where, according to the index, capital values have also plunged by 40% since the onset of the pandemic. Back in March 2020, Henry Street and Mary Street had a combined capital value of €247.33m, but as of December 2021 the value had plummeted to just 149.7m. Both figures are based on 34 properties The Irish Times, 23rd February



Industrial and Logistics Supply, Ireland Industrial and logistics specialist Rohan Holdings has work underway on facilities across three logistics parks north and south of the capital. The units will range in size from 20,000 sq. ft. – 162,500 sq. ft., with Rohan’s remaining landbank capable of accommodating individual units of up to 250,000sq ft.
The developments will include units at South-West Business Park. The first phase of buildings at the scheme will consist of four units ranging in size from 20,000 sq. ft. – 60,000 sq. ft. Phase 2 will consist of a HQ-style warehouse and office building extending to 162,500 sq. ft. and is expected to commence in the coming months. At the 150-acre Dublin Airport Logistics Park Rohan has recently completed 120,000 sq. ft. of pre-let space and is due to complete another two units of 70,000 sq. ft. and 50,000 sq. ft. this summer. Nearby at North City Business Park, at junction five on the M50, Rohan is close to completing the 45,000 sq. ft. “A6A/B” unit. The company is also on site with the next 45,000 sq. ft. “A5A/B”. All properties will target LEED silver sustainability credentials. The Irish Times, 23rd February



Ashford, Co Wicklow The Ashford House portfolio is being offered to the market at a guide price of €1.95m by Lisney. Situated on a 1.8-acre plot at the heart of Ashford village, the portfolio offers the prospective purchaser the opportunity to secure a commercial investment along with the scope to deliver a residential development. The subject property currently comprises a two-storey mixed-use investment building consisting of ground-floor retail units, a large, licensed premises, first-floor offices, a large enclosed rear yard, and a recently resurfaced car park. The building extends to 20,118 sq. ft. and is currently producing an income of c. €140k pa. The Irish Times, 23rd February



Smithfield, Dublin 7 The Smithfield Market portfolio is being offered for sale by agent Hooke & MacDonald at a guide price of €8.5m, which equates to an average of €447k per unit. The 19 apartments are occupied on standard residential tenancies and are being sold with tenants in situ who will not be affected by the sale. The portfolio comprises seven one-bedroom and 12 two-bedroom units located on and taking up the entire of the fourth, fifth and sixth floors. Five of the apartments are located at penthouse level. The Irish Times, 23rd February

For lending terms on this asset please contact rossmetcalfe@origincapital.ie

Dalkey, South Dublin A 0.37 acre site with full planning permission for six homes on Barnhill Road in Dalkey is guiding €2.5m. The property benefits from a recent approval by An Bord Pleanála for the construction of three detached five-bedroom houses and the conversion of an existing old schoolhouse/garage building into a two-bedroom townhouse. In addition, two existing town houses on the site are to be refurbished as exempt development giving the purchaser the opportunity to deliver a total of six houses on site (€417k per site). Nine car spaces are also to be provided. The site is zoned Objective A (to protect and/or improve residential amenity) under the Dún Laoghaire Rathdown County Council (DLRCC) Development Plan 2016-2022. The Irish Times, 23rd February

Clane, Co Kildare A community group has been granted permission by the High Court to challenge planning permission for 91 homes on the outskirts of Clane, Co Kildare. Clane Community Council is seeking an order overturning the project, which it says will contribute to “significant overdevelopment” of the town. The group’s case is against An Bord Pleanála, Ireland and the Attorney General, while developer Westar Investments Limited is a notice party. The proposed development comprises 58 houses, 33 apartments and a creche. The Irish Times, 24th February

Blackrock, South Dublin Residents are opposing “fast track” plans by co-owners of the Press Up Hospitality Group, Paddy McKillen Jnr and Matthew Ryan, for a €200m 493-unit apartment scheme on a site near Blackrock in south Dublin. In December the businessmen’s Oval Target Ltd lodged plans to An Bord Pleanála for the 11-block scheme, with one block rising to 10 storeys, on lands at St Teresa’s, Temple Hill, Monkstown, Blackrock. The 493 apartments are to comprise 220 one-bedroom units, 208 two-bedroom units, 47 three-bedroom units and 18 studio units on a site within one kilometre of Blackrock village. As part of the proposal the company has put an indicative price tag of €19.99m (c. €400k per unit) on the sale of 50 apartments to Dún Laoghaire Rathdown County Council for social housing as part of the firm’s Part V social housing obligations. Oval Target previously secured planning permission for 291 residential units on the same site in the face of some local opposition. That permission remains in place. In total, 41 objections have been lodged. The Irish Times, 24th February

Glenageary, South Dublin Plans by Red Rock Developments to construct 147 build-to-rent apartments in Glenageary, south Dublin are facing strong local opposition. Last year Red Rock Glenageary Ltd lodged fast-track plans to An Bord Pleanála for the 147 units across four blocks ranging in height from five to nine storeys in height at the junction of Sallynoggin Road Lower and Glenageary Avenue. More than 80 objections have been lodged against the scheme. Planning consultants for the project, Hughes Planning and Development Consultants, told An Bord Pleanála that the timely delivery of suburban housing on the site was appropriate and accords with the national focus on development, in response to the housing crisis. A decision is due on the scheme in April. The Irish Times, 23rd February

Lucan, West Dublin An Bord Pleanála has rejected plans by Paddy McKillen Jnr for a 20-storey BTR tower block for Lucan in west Dublin after widespread opposition to the scheme with 146 submissions lodged by locals. The refusal upholds a refusal by South Dublin County Council in December 2020. The 161-unit scheme was made up of four blocks ranging from four to 20 storeys in height, with the highest reaching 66 metres. In a submission to the board, the firm claimed the proposal would offer a quality residential development for residents in a low-density location. As part of its appeal, Fox Connect offered to reduce the scheme to a 12-storey proposal. An Bord Pleanála noted that the site was zoned for retail warehousing and that “residential” was not allowed on such sites. The Irish Times, 23rd February

Housing Supply, Ireland Property sector lobbyists have hit out at the government’s housing targets, and claimed that the supply of new homes has “stagnated and gone into reverse”. The lobbyists believe that 7,000 higher density schemes have been quashed by judicial reviews “on minor planning issues” within the past two years and “another 40,000 are at risk”. Furthermore, the government’s new Housing Needs Demand Assessment (HNDA) process should be “urgently reviewed” because it has created a “ceiling” for how many homes can be built in regions. In a separate letter to Darragh O’Brien, the Minister for Housing, the Irish Institutional Property (IIP) called on O’Brien to ensure that the Office of the Planning Regulator (OPR) “tackles instances” of local authorities diverging from national planning policy to encourage apartment developments. The OPR was set up to monitor the planning activities of local authorities and advise what should be removed from development plans. IIP represents some of the biggest property developers in Ireland, including Cairn Homes, Quintain Ireland, Kennedy Wilson and Ires Reit. The Business Post, 27th February

Naas, Co Kildare A land with development potential in Kildare has been brought to the market this week by agent Coonan. It is a strategical land bank in Naas, Co Kildare extending to 57 acres which has a €6m+ guide price, or more than €105.2k per acre. The objective of c. 43.84 acres is “Strategic Reserve” in the Naas Local Area Plan 2021-2027 to facilitate future development in line with the expansion of the town. A further 13.2 acres are to be used as open space and amenity. The Irish Independent, 24th February

Residential Development, Cork Plans for over 1,500 homes are either granted or advanced in the planning/SHD pipeline just beyond the North Ring Rd around Ballyvolane, Rathcooney, and the Fox & Hounds landmark hub, with unconfirmed reports of one site with planning for 750 units in place, attracting possible buyer interest at sums in excess of €20m, or €30k per housing unit. Separately, Cork developer O’Flynn Group is in the SHD process for 275 units (205 houses, 70 apartments, and services/amenities) at a site near Lahardane. Now added to the development mix is the 53-acre holding at Arderrow, just off Rathcooney Road, with a price guide equivalent to €55k an acre and available in three lots via joint agents CBRE and ERA Downey McCarthy. The sale includes industrial buildings producing a current income of €48.6k pa, and farmland let to a local farmer. The property has a €3.2m AMV and has 47.55 acres set for Tier 3 residential zoning; 5.65 acres are zoned open space. The Irish Examiner, 24th February

Residential Construction Activity, Ireland Deloitte Ireland’s latest Real Estate Planning & Development Statistics report says commencement notices were lodged on 24,304 units in residential schemes comprising more than 20 units last year. As c. 5k – 6k units are commenced annually in smaller schemes or standalone units historically, the Big Four accountant said, it arrived at an adjusted figure of 30,304 total residential commencements in 2021. That represents an increase of 40% on 2020, when there was a total of 21,686 commencements and a 16% increase on the pre-pandemic market in 2019, when work started on 26,237 homes. However, it took an average of 187.5 days to secure planning permission for new developments last year. Of the 24,304 units, houses made up 15,715 (65%), while apartments made up 6,691 (28%). A further 1,898 units (8%) were unclassified in planning documents. Dublin represented just over half the residential units for which planning applications were submitted, 57% of units for which planning permission was granted and 41% of units for which commencement notices were lodged. Cork made up 10% of units for which planning applications were submitted, 6% of units for which planning applications were granted and 11% of units which were commenced in 2021. The rest of Ireland made up 36% of units for which planning applications were submitted, 37% of units for which planning applications were granted and 48% of units which were commenced. The Irish Times, 1st March



Finance Raising, Iput has pulled in €150m from a private placement in the US as the property company progresses development and redevelopment projects. The debt raising consisted of two tranches maturing between 2034 and 2037 at a blended rate of 1.43%. In early 2020, Iput previously raised €200m from 11 institutional investors in its initial US private placement offering. Iput is lowly leveraged, with debt at the end of 2021 standing at 11% loan-to-value. The financing will be used for development and redevelopment work by Iput, including the 550,000 sq. ft. Quantum Distribution Park. Iput also has the potential to add a further 750,000 sq. ft. of sustainable logistics space at Nexus Distribution Park in the medium-term. React News, 28th February

Ronan Group Real Estate Ltd (RGRE) A dispute between RGRE and DigitalBridge, formerly Colony Capital, over the sale of stakes in the Dublin projects to US group, Fortress Investment worth an estimated €1bn has been resolved, the Commercial Court has heard. The disagreements arose out of a 2021 agreement by DigitalBridge relating to a €2.3bn transaction to sell its non-digital European property assets to Fortress. DigitalBridge’s joint ventures with RGRE are proposed to be wrapped into that deal, over objections from Mr. Ronan. The developments involved include a mixed residential and commercial project, known as the Waterfront, on Dublin’s docklands; Facebook’s new European headquarters at Fibonacci Square, in Ballsbridge; and the Spencer Place development in the docklands. The Irish Times, 28th February

CBRE Bi-Monthly Report, Ireland The lifting of all remaining pandemic restrictions in late January provided a welcome boost for many sectors of Ireland’s commercial property market. As a result, the months of January and February have been considerably busier than normal. Indeed, activity levels have picked up pace across all sectors of the market and this is now becoming increasingly evident in provincial markets as well as in the capital. Labour shortages and rising material and build costs, which have a direct impact on viability and deliverability, remain a concern in many sectors of the market particularly now as geopolitical tensions add further inflationary pressures. This in turn has heightened concerns about possible interest rate rises towards the end of this year as opposed to 2023. Nevertheless, the appetite for investment in real estate remains strong and particularly for energy efficient and sustainable assets. CBRE, 1st March


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