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-> Aldi Stores (Ireland) Developments Ltd have lodged a planning application with Cork City Council (CCC) for the demolition of the existing structures on site at Heiton Buckley premises on Tory Top Rd & the construction of a mixed use development scheme with a total of 2083m2 gross retail floor space, a creche 201m2, play area & 48 no duplex apts. The single storey Aldi Discount Food Store will be complimented by the creche and roof-top play area with the addition of 48 duplexes in six 4-storey blocks. The application represents Aldi’s largest development investment in Ireland so far and represents its plan to fall in line with Council suggestions for increased mixed-use development. This element was previously lacking in many of their other proposals and since has lost both Aldi and Lidl successful planning grants in the past.

Aldi have also lodged applications for 3 more stores in Cork city, besides this development.

-> A number of high-profile developments in Cork have reached near ‘SOLD OUT’ status before they’ve even been completed, these include O’Callaghan Properties Office Development at 21 Lavitts Quay, John Hornibrook’s apartment development at Camden Quay (Camden Court) and Fleming Construction’s Trinity Court on George’s Quay.

However, even more remarkable, Frinailla Developments project on Grand Parade, the Grand Parade Plaza, has sold almost all of its 50 apartments (starting at 390,000 euros each), with 80% of them going to owner-occupiers, and sold ALL of its underground car-parking spaces (between 70 and 90) at a price-tag of 80,000 euros each. A countrywide record. Furthermore, Atis Harrington-Bannon, estate agents for the retail element of the Plaza, have reported that almost all units have been let, sold or reserved already, all this before the project has even begun primary construction! Demolition activities have already taken place and archaelogical excavations are on-going (they seem to be on-going for months! [sigh]). However, John Paul Construction inform me, they intend to get to real work on the site in the next few weeks, possibly 2 weeks.

The 100m euro City Quarter office development by Howard Holdings on Lapps Quay is currently waiting for a grant of planning by CCC on the addition of another floor to the office element, bringing the building to 6-floors, in line with the Clarion Hotel element next-door. The application has been based on the strong take up and demand for office space within the development. Both Howard Holdings, DTZ Sherry Fitzgearld and Cohalan Downing letting and sale agents for the project are said to be delighted with the response to City Quarter. Howard Holdings intend to make head-way on their Albert Quay office/IT development (just across the river from City Quarter) within the next few weeks.

Just across Clontarf Street, at No.6 Lapps Quay, O’Flynn Construction are on-going with the development of their new office building, designed by Coughlan de Keyser Architects of Washington Street. Foundations are currently being laid, and primary construction is imminent according to the company. Although Lisney and Hamilton Osbourne King (the designated agents for the project) won’t specify the details of sale and letting agreements; I am aware of at least 3 agreements – and I have been informed that the response has been as enthusiastic as that experienced with O’Flynn’s neighbouring office development, No.5 Lapps Quay. It’s an exceptionally positive and encouraging indicator of the Cork office market, which is continuing to buck the national trend. It is a further testament to the fact, the reason many firms and businesses have located to the suburbs and other regions in the past, rather than Cork city centre, has been a distinct availability lack of quality 3rd Generation, sufficiently large office space. This lack is gradually being rectified, and subsequently developers are reaping the rewards of this.

No.6 Lapps Qy 21 Lavitts Qy

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