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The Continuous Development of Dublin 8

Guinness Brewery’s proposed development

The Continuous Development of Dublin 8 – In this article, Shane Adlum rounds up all the major developments happening in the coming years to Dublin 8 

The population of Dublin 8 will significantly increase in the next few years with several high-profile sites currently under development. The area has already seen a massive increase in the number of hotels, student accommodation and office spaces, and these numbers will continue to rise as there is no sign of the continuous building work slowing down. If anything, it’s just starting to gather pace. Here is a look at some of the high-profile developments taking place around Dublin 8.

Saint James’s Gate

Advancements in brewing techniques has meant that the amount of space that Diageo needs to brew Guinness has significantly decreased in recent years leaving much of its St. James’s Gate brewery empty. In 2017 it was announced that 12.6 acres of the brewery was to be developed into a new urban quarter.

This new urban quarter will include 500 new homes, 678,000sq ft of office space, a hotel, leisure spaces, cultural facilities and over 50,000sq ft of retail space.

Historically significant structures such as Arthur Guinness’s house and the iconic St. James’s Gate will be kept, whilst many of the empty brew houses, hop and grain stores, vat houses and cooperages will be converted in offices, apartments and shops.

Owen Keegan, Chief Executive of the City Council has said “the plans are a major step in the rejuvenation of the Liberties area in accordance with the vision and objectives set out in both the recently approved City Development Plan and the Liberties Local Area Plan.”

No announcement has been made regarding the property development partner but it is believed that UK based property firm U+I will be chosen to lead the redevelopment of St. James’s Gate.

Heuston Station

CIÉ’s chief executive, Lorcan O’Connor has recently spoken about the potential of developing Heuston station into a mixed-use development which would include homes, offices and retail units. There are about 20 acres at Heuston station which potentially could be developed.

For some the train station is just seen as a way in and out of Dublin but it plays a much more significant role than that. It could be seen as a gateway to Dublin, bookending the western side of the city. It is also a meeting point of trains, buses, Luas trams and cycle lanes.

The area known as Heuston South Quarter could also see some major redevelopment after it was acquired by  Henderson . The development already consists of 266 apartments, over 100,000sq ft of office space and a significant amount of retail space. There is well over 3 acres of potential development site left which could see a further 245 apartments as well as more office and retail space.

Iveagh Market

In 1997 Martin Keane bought the Iveagh Market building for £1.4 million from the council with the condition that he must redevelop it. Since then, an archaeological dig, problems with the property’s title and the economic crash have seen the building lay idle for two decades.

In 2017 the council began proceedings to take back control of the building. Mr Keane has since responded to this by announcing new plans to redevelop the site. These plans include a food hall, flower market, cookery school, distillery, music venue and restaurants. The ambitious plans also include two hotels and a youth hostel in adjoining buildings.

Newmarket Square

In 2018 a number of markets that had been operating out of Newmarket Square, including the Dublin Flea Market, the Brocante and the Pure Vintage Fair, were asked to move on, suggesting the area is preparing for redevelopment. The area has had a number of big changes in recent years with the opening of the Teeling Whiskey Distillery, the Aloft Hotel and two student accommodation developments.

The Eight Building is currently under construction in Newmarket Square. When completed the six-storey building will provide 75,000sq ft of grade A office space.

Player Wills Factory

Built in 1935 and in use until 2005, the former tobacco factory is located on the South Circular Road and is just a short distance from the City Centre making it a very appealing site for developers.

Before the economic crash, planning permission had been granted to developer Ciarán Larkin to develop the site into 754 apartments, offices, retail space, a school, two creches, a medical centre, leisure centre and a swimming pool. Unfortunately, the building ended up in the hands of NAMA and those plans were scrapped.

Recently, Hines, a US based property group, acquired the site and are planning on converting it into 1,400 new homes, comprising of both privately rented and traditional owner-occupied units. They are expected to submit their plans later this year.

Other sites

The Hickeys site on Parkgate Street has been acquired by developer Joe O’Reilly. At 1.65 acres the site has massive potential. It could be a hotel, offices, apartments or a mix of these.

The former DIT campus on Kevin Street was bought for €140 million by developer Shane Whelan’s Westridge Real Estate. While no planning permission has yet been submitted it is expected that the 570,487sq ft site will be used for grade A office space, retail units, restaurants and hundreds of apartments.

Developer Paddy McKillen jnr’s Oakmount sold a site on Fumbally Lane for €10.5 million last May. The buyer was The Collective, a company that specialize in co-living accommodation. Planning permission had been granted for 34 apartments and office space but it is expected that The Collective will resubmit new plans for the site.

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