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

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-> For those of you familiar with the classic Cork night-venue, the Maltings Emporium, Mardyke Tavern and Club FX complex, after 8 months on the marketplace and an initial tender price of 4m euro, the facility has been sold to UK (Newcastle) based Ultimate Leisure (Ireland) Ltd for 5m euros. Ultimate Leisure own 28 night-venues across the UK and 4 in Northern Ireland. They plan to exstensively renovate the complex before re-opening it early next year (subject to a possible planning application). Former owner, Frank Sheahan of FV Sheahan Auctioneers on Marlboro Street, had decided to sell the complex to focus on his property development career – which so far includes the Lancaster Hall student complex on Lynch Street (adjacent to the Maltings), and with Joe Carey (developer of the 100m euro Fota Island Retail Park and Business Complex), a number of large apartment and commercial buildings at Hewitt Mills along the Blackpool By-Pass.

-> On a related note, rumour has it, that Frank Sheahan, who had been using the services of PJ Hegarty Contractors for his Lancaster Hall and Blackpool By-Pass/Assumption Road apartment development (designed by JE Keating in a 7-storey semi-circular, red-brick shape) has opted for Rohcon to develop the new row of apartment buildings adjacent to the JE Keating designed block. This is evident from the erection of the Rohcon tower crane on site earlier this month. The apparent reason is down to the fact that the developer had fallen out with PJ Hegarty after the firm failed to meet a completion deadline of September for the Lancaster Hall project, which was due to receive residents at the start of the university academic year. The project is yet to be complete and as a result, the developer will not be able to receive rents in full until the following academic year – unless students can be persuaded otherwise. Either way, it could be very difficult. Rohcon have begun the construction of 44 new apartments on the Hewitt Mills site, which will see a line of between 4 and 6 storey buildings erected.

-> At Carroll’s Quay, OSB (Neil O’Sullivan) has been granted permission after ABP appeal for Phase 2 of his residential, theatre and licensed bar development. ABP granted permission for 49 of the proposed 55 apartments, along with new Cork Arts Theatre and Pa Johnsons pub. A suggestion was made by ABP to extend either the theatre or bar through the ommission of 3 ground floor apartments. The project, Phase 1 and Phase 2 are designed by James Leahy & Assoc.

– for those of you who think I knock An Taisce Corcaigh too often and unfairly, the CCC and ABP reports on their objections to this OSB Phase 2 project offer very good justification for my complaining and clearly display their petty behaviour in Cork (although, and I can assure you, this report is one of their better ones. An Taisce objections are often far more ludicrous.) To read this very common sensical report by ABP and CCC. Follow this link ->

– a few years ago, a similar project was refused permission by ABP on this same site (at the time being developed by Carroll’s Quay Development Group). The architects were O’Riordan Staehli. Here’s an image of what could have gone up had there been no refusal. Note, the surroundings have VASTLY changed since with numerous office and apartment buildings having been erected in the immediate surrounding areas.

The new OSB development greenlighted is noted in the report for its striking and likeable design.

Just in response to burge_eye’s above remark -> Howard Holdings have developed a 200 bedroom hotel, operated by Choice Hotels under the Clarion brand, for Lapps Quay. Lance Investments have been recently refused planning by ABP for a 232-bedroom hotel on the Lee Road. Michael O’Donoghue (Rockfell Investments) were refused by ABP after grant from CCC for the development of a 9-storey 400 bedroom hotel on Cornmarket Street – and 2 other very prominent developments are considering the addition of 100 more bedrooms to their hotel elements (one being operated by Hilton) of 150 bedrooms each. I don’t think viability is the question – which makes the reduction in numbers at Jurys even more curious. However I do agree about the naivity of space maximisation by Dan Boyle – it makes logical sense for a developer to maximise it. However, his objection is related to traffic movements in the area – and I do take his point, the Western Road/Lancaster Quay/Washington Street is exceptionally congested even at the best of times. Riga Ltd will have to carefully consider its traffic management options for the Jurys site. 2 bridges will serve the development and the majority of parking will be residential, hopefully the city centre location will encourage public transport and walking means.

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