Cork events centre site to see more student accommodation

Planning permission has been granted for extra student accommodation on part of the former Beamish brewery site earmarked for Cork’s €65m events centre.

However, it is unclear if BAM Property intends to begin work soon or will have to await the outcome of a possible planning application for changes to the concert and conference venue.

Cork City Council’s decision gives the company approval to provide bed spaces for more than 400 students, in a change to the plans for which permission was originally granted as part of the overall project in late 2011.

BAM applied last September to reduce office and shop space to increase the amount of student accommodation on the northern end of the site, nearest to Washington Street, one of three zones on the Brewery Quarter plot on South Main Street.

However, after the firm’s briefing to city councillors earlier this week about the changes it wishes to make to the main aspect of the project, it is understood that new plans for the zone which includes the events centre will have to be submitted to the council.

The project has already been promised €12m from the Government and €8m from Cork City Council, but BAM now says the requirements of the proposed operators of the venue, Live Nation, mean significant changes need to be made to make it viable.

The Irish Examiner reported earlier this week that those changes may involve reductions in the amount of office space on that part of the site, and would require planning approval as a change from the parent permission.

The student accommodation plans could help meet a requirement for increased purpose-built third-level student facilities.

The archaeological importance of the site, once part of the early medieval city, means the old city wall will be preserved in-situ.

A historic laneway is to be re-established in the student apartment zone, linking South Main Street to a pedestrian bridge across the River Lee.

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