Sunday Property Round-Up, March 29th 2020

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Irish property market news and insights – for the industry, by the industry  



The past 24-hour period has seen the highest daily death toll in Ireland, naturally, the broadsheets continue to be dominated by coronavirus coverage. I hope that everyone reading this today is keeping well, physically and mentally. These are truly challenging times and I fully understand that these challenges are relative. For anyone facing any health issues, themselves or a loved one, this is all-consuming. For others, survival is a broader concept right now; how to stay healthy enough to keep the business going under unprecedented circumstances and how to add value to our colleagues, clients and communities. The leadership shown by our so-called caretaker government has been phenomenal. This leadership is not just in the bold, decisive action taken, but in the words shared, the vulnerabilities acknowledged and how the public has been kept regularly informed in a calm, yet realistic way. Industry business owners and managers could really learn from this.




Before we get stuck into the general property news of the week, below are the local and international stories that might be of particular interest: 





  • Most construction work will stop unless essential to pandemic, Harris says 
    Under construction, the essential work is listed as: Essential health and related projects relevant to the COVID-19 crisis, and supplies necessary for such projects
    Repair/construction of critical road and utility infrastructure

    Delivery of emergency services to businesses and homes on an emergency call-out basis in areas such as electrical, plumbing, glazing and roofing
    “They’re not [essential] unless they are building something that is essential to this pandemic,” Harris said.





  • If you read only one news feature in-depth today, let it be this one: Nothing taken for granted as property market holds its breath:  House buyers and sellers alike are holding their breath as the nation waits for the pandemic to play out. Here‘s how the residential sector is handling the uncertainty – and what might happen next | Business Post








If you missed last week’s round-up, you can catch up here: 




As always, you might let me know if I have missed out on any relevant property news by emailing



(Apologies in advance for any typos, it’s difficult to get good help on a Sunday. Also, I use voice to text dictation so just sound out anything that really doesn’t make sense in a strong rural accent and that should help!)








Property Matters: Ireland’s First Weekly Property Radio Show (& Podcast!):


Ireland’s first weekly property radio show, Property Matters, launched In January 2019 on Dublin South FM 93.9 and is now available internationally via iTunes and Spotify podcast ( Seasoned political broadcaster, Bryan Fox, and I (Carol Tallon) team up to deliver 60 minutes of industry chat with guests from the areas of planning, construction, property and proptech. Produced by Katie Tallon of Hear Me Roar Media



Listen back to proptech provider Nicholas Polley of 3D Design Bureau and #SpaceAsAService expert Antony Slumbers who joined me (remotely!) on PROPERTY MATTERS this week to discuss the impact of Covid-19 on planning, new development projects, construction sites and property viewings for estate and letting agents.

Listen back here: 

*Listen back to all #PropertyMatters episodes here: 



Email the Property Matters team at











*PLACEengage: The future of speedy, successful placemaking for property developers is here – Property developers and project owners ready Public Consultation are encouraged to contact the PLACEengage team for full details*








  • In the Sunday Independent: €30m plan to rapidly build ‘field hospitals’

    The Government has a €30m emergency back-up plan which would see over 20 ‘field hospitals’ built to treat critical Covid-19 patients nationwide.

    The plan will come into play if the health system becomes overburdened from the expected huge influx of coronavirus-infected patients in the coming weeks.

    The prefabricated structures will be built on or near under-pressure hospitals in Dublin, Cork, Sligo and Limerick and will cater for over 250 critically ill patients, with more builds to follow as the crisis worsens.

    A source confirmed to the Sunday Independent the nationwide roll-out is ‘ready to go” if the Government green-lights it. The projects will take just eight weeks to complete.

    “Each hospital will be able to cater for 12 intensive care beds,” said the source, highlighting the need to keep numbers small to stop the spread of infection, while providing the best care for patients.



  • Demands of social distancing shut down country’s building sites:  With images circulating of construction workers huddling together on sites, a closure of all building projects this weekend was effectively inevitable in the circumstances | Business Post



  • Coronavirus: High-profile building projects may soon grind to a halt

    Multinationals could halt building in the Republic, sources suggested on Wednesday, as work continued on high-profile projects such as the National Children’s Hospital and Grangegorman university site.

    The Government is allowing work to continue on building sites around the Republic, which employ 30,000 people, despite some unions arguing the industry should close along with others to protect workers from Covid-19 infection.

    However, industry sources suggest that multinationals with construction projects under way in the Republic could halt this work as these businesses react to the pandemic.

    Tech giant Facebook earlier this week confirmed that it would temporarily suspend building at its data centre in Clonee, Dublin, in what it said was a move designed to protect workers’ health.




  • 800 northside Dublin apartments get planning green light under fast-track housing rules: In decisions published yesterday, An Bord Pleanála approved a 485-unit residential development on the Carnlough Road in Cabra, Dublin 7, on lands purchased from CIE in 2004.

    It also gave the green light to Cosgrave Developments’ 329-unit development on former Santry Demesne grounds off Northwood Avenue near the Gullivers Retail Park and M50. The Cosgrave plan envisions four eight-storey blocks, mostly two-bedroom units with penthouses on top,


  • Green light for almost 500 new apartments in Cabra: Planning permission has been granted for a new development of almost 500 homes and a neighbourhood centre on a former CIÉ site in Cabra.

    An Bord Pleanála has approved plans by Seven Cabra Real Estate for the construction of 485 apartments as well as a convenience store, cafe, gym and creche on a 3.9 hectare site on Carnlough Road in the northside suburb.

    The company is managed by UK real estate investment management company, Tristan Capital Partners, which acquired the site from developer Pat Crean’s Marlet group in a deal believed to be worth around €39 million




  • Crosbie appeals vacant site tax on €1m ‘shed’

    Developer Harry Crosbie is appealing against the vacant site tax applied to a €1m warehouse he owns in Dublin city, insisting the “shed” is in use and will become a hotel.

    The builder, who has proposed reclaiming land from the Irish Sea to build homes, said the vacant site levy applied to his warehouse behind the Vicar Street concert venue is not fair. Records show he lodged an appeal with An Bord Pleanala (ABP) last Monday.


  • Goodman firm seeks revisions to plans for city centre office block:  New application exposes Ternary Limited to further objections | Business Post


  • Kildare County Council chief opposes housing plans –  Draft variation to development plan aims to curtail proposed housing developments (700 units total) | Business Post



  • Planning appeal lodged against a decision preventing developer from completing a ghost estate in Athlone – Shannonside









  • From smart design and planning right through to the smart property transaction, where does your Irish-led or Ireland-based proptech  or MMC business sit? Pease take five minutes to add or update your details to our internationally-shared listing here: SIGN UP HERE: *PROPTECH INNOVATORS and STARTUPS * 




























  • ‪BIM for project managers via @Arcdox ‬





  • Dublin snaps up apartment leases for social housing: Dublin city council is in discussions with developers and venture funds about acquiring “hundreds” of long-term leases on apartments in the city, in the hope of greatly increasing its stock of social housing over the next year.

    The country’s largest local authority is also making use of the shock that coronavirus has had on Dublin property prices, to reduce the number of families and single people living in emergency homeless accommodation.

    Brendan Kenny, the council’s deputy chief executive, said the collapse of the tourism sector and the property market was helping the council to provide better care for homeless people.
    Read more:



  • Property is in a strong position to withstand the coming storm | Business Post

    “While it’s too soon to predict the extent of the impact of Covid-19 on the real estate market, and there will be an impact, its scale will depend on how long the pandemic lasts”





  • Bank of Ireland and Permanent TSB have begun turning down house-buyers seeking to borrow more than three-and-a-half times their earnings, in the first signs of how mortgage providers are reacting to the squeeze on earnings caused by the coronavirus crisis.

    PTSB has issued a blanket ban from April 2 on all mortgage applications requiring an exemption from the Central Bank of Ireland’s lending rules. The rules require borrowers to have deposits of up to 20% and cap mortgages at three-and-a-half times their incomes. Exemptions are allowed for borderline applicants.



  • Writing in the Sunday Independent today, Sean Pollock reports that “nearly half of Irish home buyers plan to delay  purchasing property due to uncertainty caused by the coronavirus pandemic“.

























  • In the Sunday Independent today, Samantha McCaughren writes:

    Retailers are seeking significant support from the Government in paying commercial rent ahead of Wednesday, when hundreds of millions of euro are due to be paid for quarter two.

    In a circular sent to around 200 well-known retailers, Retail Excellence warned that many shops will take up to three years to recover from the coronavirus crisis.

    It said that a significant proportion of retailers will not be in a position to pay their Q2 2020 rent bill. “They are scrambling to negotiate alternation of terms, but ultimately they are simply buying time before the inevitable happens,”











  • Commercial lease issues that could arise during Covid-19 and how to deal with them:  As many premises are forced to close temporarily, landlords and tenants can take several different options towards rent and service charges. As with all business negotiations, a flexible approach will help both sides in future relationships, writes Chris Connolly in the Business Post today





















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