Reply To: Look at de state of Cork, like!

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CIE remain very tight-lipped on the whole scheme – they’ve made a commitment but have failed to make a formal public announcement on plans. My own personal belief is that they are having problems securing designated finance – after all it is still a public company ~ and many such companies have difficulty committing finance for stragic purposes because the lack the vision for long-term revenue strategies. Redeveloping Horgan’s Quay along with private investors like Treasury Holdings presents a spectacular investment opportunity and would see CIE maximizing its assets with a view to strategic returns.

The Irish Examiner claims that Treasury and Manor Park are likely to make an announcement (pending successful proposals) ahead of CIE – effectively dragging the state company kicking and screaming into the project [for its own good I might add] – the annoncement is expected before year-end.


The O’Flynn’s have erected a huge display banner on-site at Eglinton Street announcing the near announcement of a “Major Retail and Residential Complex Development”. The Irish Examiner and Irish Independent claim the O’Flynn’s have plans for a striking and modern high-rise development in the region of 60-million euros – however I’m not so sure of this from my personal inquiries with the company. A high-rise so close to City Hall is risky and the O’Flynn’s are aware of that. I am aware that they have 2 plans already designed and they are considering the most suitable. Either way, the site location and size mean the development is gonna be huge. A formal anouncement expected before end of July, early August. (It is expected Eglinton Street development will also cater for the parking needs – in undergound form – for the No.6 Lapps Quay office building currently under construction.


With the call by the Cork Business Association (CBA) today (28th July 2004) for a major events centre in Cork city. Plans for Sports Arena development (capable of hosting international sporting events – incl. rugby, soccer, athletics etc) along the docklands, and the development of quayside boardwalks (mostly by private investors as part of their individual projects – i.e. Howard Holdings = Lapps Quay, Werdna Ltd = Water Street, Victoria Hall Developments and UCC from Victoria Mills through UCC to Lancaster Quay – and the proposed Mardyke to North Mall boardwalk via Irish Distillers pre-planning development) Cork is gaining all the time.

The city really is on the move – and as the Chief Economist at DTZ Sherry Fitzgearld recently announced – for investors, Cork city represents the most exciting development opportunities (especially commercial) anywhere in Ireland right now. The city has a catchment of 500,000 people with 365,000 in it’s immediate metropolitan area. Unemployment and crime are at their lowest levels in decades and discretionary income is at its highest. After Dublin, Cork is the 2nd largest urban area and 2nd most affluent population. Big developers have caught on this ie. O’Callaghan Properties, whose total current development spend in Cork is almost 700-million euros (Mahon Point, Lavitts Quay, Classis Lake, Academy Street, Ballinlough etc), O’Flynn Construction = 675-million euro (Ballincollig Town Centre, Lapps Quay, Dunkettle, Eglinton Street etc), Howard Holdings = 260million euros (Lapps Quay, Albert Quay, Docklands, Estuary Court, Angelsea Street etc) and many more incl. Shipton Group (120m), Frinailla Developments (130m), Werdna (80m), Sheehan Family, Hornibrook and Co., Treasury Holdings, OSB, Jarvis, Hanranka Ltd., Corbett Bros etc.

Cork really is the place to invest right now and I only pray the planners don’t mess it up. And if things keep up (and they are projected to up to 2016), Cork really could become a major alternative to Dublin. It’s taken a long while, but as any economist or consumer will tell you, a little competition never hurt anyone. As market economies show, it can make you stronger. What’s good for Cork maybe good for Dublin and the rest of the country. Let’s just keep those fingers crossed!

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