Prime Portlaoise town centre sites to make over €27m

Redevelopment Sites: Two sites in fast-growing Portlaoise are likely to be redeveloped for a mix of retail and residential, …

Redevelopment Sites: Two sites in fast-growing Portlaoise are likely to be redeveloped for a mix of retail and residential, writes Jack Fagan

Two prime town centre sites in Portlaoise, Co Laois, are expected to attract the attention of developers and retailers when they go on the market today through Bannon Commercial.

Although both properties are located within a short distance of each other, there the similarity ends.

The first, Centrepoint shopping centre on the Mountrath Road, is occupied by Shaws and five retail tenants. The shopping complex, with 4,800sq m (51,667sq ft) of space over two floors, is currently producing an income of €265,688 per annum.

As owners, Shaws do not contribute to the rent roll but, shortly after the sale, it plans to vacate its store of 782sq m (8,500sq ft). A number of the main food retailers, including Supervalu and Tesco, are likely to be interested in the development opportunity.

Robert McNamara of Bannon expects to secure over €12 million for the buildings which stand on a site of 3.79 hectares (9.6 acres). A new owner is expected to seek planning permission for a larger retail element along with apartments. The property is to be sold in one or four separate lots.

Bannon is also guiding over €15 million for a ready-to-go retail site of 2 hectares (4.95 acres) in the retail core of Portlaoise. It is owned by a consortium led by solicitor and developer Noel Smyth who secured town centre zoning and planning permission after acquiring it from another developer some time ago.

The former Tretorne factory premises on Kylekiproe Road has full planning permission for a retail scheme of 11,200sq m (120,000sq ft), including an anchor unit of 2,429sq m (26,145sq ft), eight mall units at ground and mezzanine level along with 419 car-parking spaces.

The site adjoins the Kyle Centre, which is currently being developed by Dunnes Stores which will trade out of a unit of 5,945sq m (65,000sq ft). There will also be 25 unit shops and a substantial car-park.

Directly opposite the Dunnes Stores scheme, Pat Doherty's Harcourt Group is developing a substantial extension to the Portlaoise shopping centre which may also be of interest to Tesco which is already trading from the adjoining site. Harcourt's long term plan is apparently to provide a shopping mall on the site currently occupied by Tesco.

Portlaoise has been one of the fastest growing towns in recent years, largely because of the upgrading of the M7 to Dublin and improvements in the frequency of retail services.

Both properties go to tender on October 20th.

Meanwhile, Bannon Commercial is quoting a guide price of €4.5 million for a site of 2.42 hectares (6 acres) with full planning permission for retail facilities at Birr, Co Offaly. There is full planning permission for a supermarket of 2,532sq m (27,254sq ft) and three retail warehouses from 842-1,282sq m (9,063-13,800sq ft). The well located site goes to tender on October 17th.