Council buys ‘car park’ square at auction for €142k

Dublin City Council has bought a Georgian garden square once owned by a businessman who attempted to use the two-acre leafy landmark as a car park.

Dartmouth Square in Ranelagh failed to attract any bids at an Allsop Space auction in Dublin but negotiations shortly after concluded with a sale to a “party in trust” for €142,000 — €2,000 over the reserve.

A council spokesperson later confirmed that the square surrounded by period red brick houses was bought by the council with the support of local residents.

The square was once owned by businessman Noel O’Gara who bought it for a reported €10,000 in 2005 and attempted to build a showroom and car park on the site.

Only pre-registered bidders who made a deposit of €14,000 could take part in the auction of the square for liquidator Tom Murray of Friel Stafford Corporate Recovery, court appointed liquidator over O’Gara-related company Marble and granite Tiles Limited.

Labour Cllr Mary Freehill said the council did not bid for the property because it did not want to be upping the price when spending public money. Mr O’Gara, who was at the auction, was disappointed there were no bids for the property.

Almost an entire street in Clonmel, Co Tipperary, sold for €920,000, €20,000 over the reserve.

The lot included 18 retail units in six buildings located in a pedestrianised area of the town centre.

Nine of the units have tenants with a rent role of over €231,000 per annum.

The Moonduster bar in Crosshaven, Co Cork, that carried a reserve of just €225,000, was not sold. The highest bid was €220,000. The property includes an overhead apartment with a rental income of €5,500 per annum.

However, a commercial property in Wilton, Cork, was sold for €810,000, double its reserve. The property, located near Cork University Hospital, is being rented by a late night pharmacy for €85,000 per annum.

About 2,000 people attended the auction throughout the seven-hour sale where 91 out of 104 lots sold, realising €14.3m.


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