Ires Reit prepares application for 428 apartments in Sandyford

Plans exist for 800-plus units as build-to-rent developments go after growing profit sector

Ireland's largest private landlord Ires Reit is readying a new planning application for 428 apartments at the Rockbrook development, following a previous rejection from An Bord Pleanála at the Sandyford site.

The move from the property investment company is the latest in a line of proposed developments on the build-to-rent side, and comes as an economist forecasts Dublin rents will rise by a further 17.3 per cent by September 2021.

Ires Reit is looking for its luck to turn around on its Rockbrook site in Sandyford, south Dublin, having previously been denied permission by Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council to build 456 apartments there.

An appeal was also turned down by An Bord Pleanála. But the company moved fast in the new year, opening discussions with the bord for 428 apartments, plus a creche and associated site works, at the development. It is expected that the application will be finalised around February.


Fast-track system

A pre-application for fast-track planning was also submitted by the Granville Hall Partnership early in the new year, to build 143 build-to-rent apartments on a two-acre site it acquired in Foxrock, south Dublin.

The fast-track system allows proposals for 100 or more dwellings to go straight to An Bord Pleanála, once the developer has consulted with both it and the local council.

Part of the site, known as Aberdour, had previously been owned by Thycar Investments, but was acquired by Richmond Homes during the summer for an undisclosed sum. Despite considerable local opposition, permission was obtained to build a 48-unit apartment scheme, to be known as Granville Hall, on the site.

Record rents

The homebuilder has now considerably upped the density on the development, following its acquisition of a neighbouring property, Roselawn, for €2 million last year, and is looking to build 143 units on the larger site.

With rents continuing to reach record highs, developers are increasingly building apartments for the rental, rather than the sales market.

Durkan Homes is also looking to participate in the build-to-rent boom. It sought fast-track planning on January 2nd to build more than 260 apartments for the rental market on the site of the old Dulux Paints factory in Drimnagh on Dublin’s southside.

“The values are higher on a build-to-rent valuation than on a build-to-sell,” says John McCartney, director of Savills Ireland Research.

Mr McCartney is forecasting rental growth of 17.3 per cent out to 2021, or an annualised rate of 6.2 per cent a year. This means that the average Dublin rent would rise to €1,898 by the third quarter of 2021.

Fiona Reddan

Fiona Reddan

Fiona Reddan is a writer specialising in personal finance and is the Home & Design Editor of The Irish Times