By Kevin O’Neill
A prime Cork Docklands site has been snapped up by a Dublin property development company with the aim of constructing more than 1,000 homes.
The former Ford depot site, currently used for the Live at the Marquee concerts, was listed for sale earlier this year and has been purchased by Glenveagh Properties PLC in a transaction worth “in excess of €15 million.”
The company confirmed the transaction in a trading statement issued to shareholders recently.
The 4.6-hectare site, formerly the site of the Ford depot, is viewed as one of the key elements of the wider Docklands project, which is being earmarked for redevelopment in the coming years.
The exact purchase price is commercially sensitive, according to the trading statement, but is ‘in excess of €15 million.’
Contracts have been exchanged following a public tendering process, with the deal to be finalised this autumn.
The deal is the latest chapter in the complicated history of the site, which was once earmarked for more than 500 apartments and a 200 bedroom hotel, as well as offices. It was also once proposed as a potential site for an events centre.
It was listed for sale by NAMA earlier this year, with more than 40 inquiries from ‘Irish, UK, European and Middle East’ investors fielded by selling agents CBRE within the first week of sale.
Despite the sale of the site, concert promoter Peter Aiken said the short-term future of the Live at the Marquee series is secure.
Ahead of this year’s Marquee concerts, Mr Aiken said that he has already booked a number of acts for next year but accepted that the site will eventually be redeveloped.
The news that a deal has been reached for the site was welcomed by Cork Chamber CEO Conor Healy, who noted that the provision of new homes is essential to sustain Cork’s growth.
He said: “This acquisition is hugely exciting for both the future of Cork’s docklands and for Cork to scale in line with national targets under which we will become the fastest growing city in Ireland. The delivery of up to 1,000 new housing units in a prime location such as our docklands is central to everything we are trying to achieve in Cork.”