Three development packages worth €30m hit the Cork market

Three development sites worth up to €30m have been put for sale in Cork City and suburbs.

Three development packages worth €30m hit the Cork market

One site is billed as “the largest and best residential development site to come to the market in the past 10 years,” capable of taking up to 450 new homes on the fringes of the southside suburb of Douglas.

Offered at a time of a dearth of new housing stock which is driving up prices and rents, the three Cork sites, include 52 zoned acres at Castletreasure, Douglas, a former garage 0.5 acre site at Dennehys Cross and the fire-damaged Good Shepherd Convent on seven acres at Sundays Well.

The three had formed part of the major €503m Ulster Bank portfolio sale, Project Clear, which was acquired by Cairn Homes and Lone Star in December 2015.

Project Clear mainly comprised highly-valuable Dublin sites, including at Adamstown, with scope for 18,000 to 20,000 new homes around the capital.

This Cork trio, deemed as surplus to Cairns’ current plans, were associated with Cork development firm Frinailla, who had trained their sights on Dennehy’s Cross, Grand Parade, and Douglas in the early to mid-2000s, on an expensive, boom-time site buying spree.

The 52 acres at Castletreasure was to host a relocated Douglas GAA suite of pitches and clubhouse, in return for a Douglas village GAA land swap, a public park, and a national school site, among other elements, funded by the sale of many hundreds of new houses across the road from Douglas Golf Course on Carrs Hill.

Now offered via agents Savills in one or more lots for sale by June 8 are the three Cork sites bundled as ‘The Treasure Collection,’ with a guide of around €25m for the 52 Castletreasure acres, and around €1.5 m for each of the other two at Dennehys Cross, and the Good Shepherd Convent lands.

Castletreasure could accommodate up to 450 homes, and be the next sizeable new homes scheme on a par with Mount Oval, Maryborough Woods, or Maryborough Heights, it’s claimed.

The area is due for new road investment at the N28. Interest is expected from the likes of the O’Flynn Group, who had reportedly sought to acquire Project Clear in 2015 with US finance from Avenue, and from a handful of other developers, with Dublin-based inquiries also anticipated by the June 8 private treaty sale date.

Savills director Peter O’Meara says: “With housing stock in Cork at an all-time low, developers will welcome these sites to the market, particularly given their ability to deliver a large volume and wide range of unit types.”

The Good Shepherd Convent site has a lapsed planning (granted after appeal) for 260 units, and could suit nursing home, hotel, student apartments or other uses.

Facing a completed and fully-let Frinailla apartment scheme near UCC, the Dennehys Cross former car showroom site had planning extended to 2018 for a commercial showroom, three townhouses, and 28 apartments overhead.

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