A city plans to sell a historic derelict house and nearby lands just months after buying them as part of a strategic €2.6m 106-acre land deal.
Cork City Council insisted that its plan to dispose of Inchigaggin House and sell a nearby site, as well as leasing larger parcels of land straddling Carrigrohane Rd, just four months after completing the overall purchase, will help it recover a portion of the purchase costs and will not impact on its plans for the area, which include providing more recreational facilities there.
A review of sporting needs is now planned ahead of the city boundary extension.
The detail is contained in responses to questions from Fine Gael councillor John Buttimer about the recent land deal on the back of the council’s existing land ownership there.
“We’ve been sitting on land for 10 years here that we haven’t developed yet. We now need a comprehensive plan and we need to secure funding to develop meaningful sporting facilities and amenities in this area,” he said.
In 2006, the city bought 36 acres at Leemount, and in 2009, it bought 19 acres on Inchigaggin Lane, which leads from Carrigrohane Rd to Model Farm Rd.
In June, it concluded the purchase of a 106-acre property mix around Inchigaggin Lane and on Carrigrohane Rd which had been offered for sale last year following High Court instructions through a receiver.
The deal included 30 acres, including Inchigaggin House, which is in a landscape preservation zone, and 76 acres both north and south of Carrigrohane Rd, which is zoned prominent and strategic metropolitan greenbelt. All the land is under grass.
The derelict, protected, nine-bay, two-storey house dating from about 1800 is in a poor state of repair and in need of complete refurbishment.
The council’s offer of €2.63m was recommended for acceptance to the High Court in June 2017 but the land did not formally come into city ownership until June 6, 2018.
In response to Mr Buttimer’s queries, the council said the recent “strategic acquisition” of the 106 acres “adds to and consolidates” the council’s landbank in the area and will give it an opportunity to expand recreational facilities and amenities in the area, and capitalise on opportunities presented by the OPW’s planned flood defence works along the Lee Fields.
Officials said given the condition and heritage status of Inchigaggin House, it is not suitable for council use and sale on the open market is the preferred option.
They plan to sell a 4.8-acre site to the west of Inchigaggin Lane, with access to Model Farm Rd, and reinvest the proceeds in new amenity facilities. And they plan to dispose by way of a short-term lease for agricultural use the remaining 28 acres of land around Inchigaggin House, 29 acres to the west of Inchigaggin Lane, and 60 acres to the north of Carrigrohane Rd.
The various disposals are due before councillors next month for consideration.