The €90m office development proposed this week for Cork City’s quays show a mark of confidence in the second city’s employment prospects — much of it foreign direct investment-sourced jobs — as is evident in recent jobs announcements and arrivals such as Tyco.
Behind the plan for a significant office/technology complex of 360,000sq ft in flour blocks on Albert Quay are O’Callaghan Properties: It has assembled this site over several years, previously proposing a 6,000 seat, 100,000sq ft event centre here on 1.75 acres.
Now, this bigger site has loftier accommodation ambitions, in five and six floors of offices, above 300 basement parking spaces in an evolving and shifting central business district.
It is a catalyst for further renewal, says O’Callaghan Properties, whose previous Cork developments of note include Mahon Point, Opera Lane, Half Moon St, and shopping centres such as Merchants Quay.
At 360,000sq ft, it is over twice the size of John Cleary Developments’ just finished One Albert Quay’s 170,000sq ft, and shares the same architects, Henry J Lyons.
It is more than three times the size of the office element of City Quarter on Lapps Quay, by the Clarion Hotel.
It is the same size as John Cleary Developments 360,000sq ft City Gate in Mahon, which includes offices, a private hospital, and a clinic among other elements. And, it is larger than the subsequent John Cleary Developments major Mahon office scheme, the €70m City Gate Park, which saw 300,000sq ft built and occupied during the economic downturn, between 2012 and 2014.
O’Callaghan Properties said “this project will help to reinforce the identity of the Cork City brand internationally and underpin the “marketability” of the city as a location for major investment projects”.
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