Cork’s skyline is set to reach new heights with the country’s tallest building planned for the city’s docklands.
The 25-storey tower, next to fully occupied 17-storey Elysian development, has been unveiled by developers JCD on the former Sextant bar and existing Carey Tool Hire site on Albert Quay and Albert Street.
JCD has already built offices for over 4,500 workers in Cork City and aims to accommodate hundreds of new arrivals in the tower block.
At a scheduled 82m in height, it’s the latest example of developers reaching to new heights in Cork and in Dublin, where the 22-storey tower at Capital Dock, Dublin, is currently Ireland’s tallest completed built tower, at 79m, just shading the Elysian’s 71m.
JCD is to seek fast-track Strategic Housing Development approval from An Bord Pleanála for a 25-storey development, with 201 apartments aimed at the ‘build-to-rent’ market.
The site for the circa €90m investment is next to new office blocks at One Albert Quay and at Navigation Square, reaching back to Albert Road where a protected old rail ticket and booking office will be converted to bar and restaurant use.
Bord Pleanála recently granted planning for a 16-storey office development ‘The Prism’ in Cork for US-based Irish developers, while an application in excess of 30 storeys is expected later this summer for the Port of Cork site, for the same NY-based O’Sullivan family.
Apart from height, this 25-storey Albert Quay JCD proposal is significant as it will start to address the need for quality urban rental apartments for the burgeoning office/tech sector, with 200 apartments to rent.
Some 95 of them are one-beds, and 101 two-bedrooms, expected to command rents of over €2,000 a month to make the development financially viable.
Sources also say a current site with full planning for 230 ‘build-to-rent’ units at Horgan’s Quay, at heights of up to 11 floors and being developed by BAM/Clarendon Properties, is hoping to increase that permitted density to c 300 apartments.
News of the lofty residential development proposal in a pivotal docklands site by developers of the calibre of JCD has been welcomed by the Cork Chamber of Commerce and by Tánaiste Simon Coveney TD.
JCD chief John Cleary said the residential investment would bring vibrant, out-of-office-hours activity to a developing office quadrant.
“It’s been almost 12 years since the last new city centre apartment scheme of scale was completed in Cork City. Given the ongoing momentum we are witnessing in the office sector, should the residential schemes not be brought forward, the ongoing development of the city centre will be compromised.”