Crumlin hospital site may be sold or refitted for adults

Our Lady’s land bank could have ‘significant residual value’ after St James’s opens

If sold, the Our Lady’s Children’s Hospital in Crumlin  site could raise up to €37 million, according to a memo from Minister for Health Simon Harris.

If sold, the Our Lady’s Children’s Hospital in Crumlin site could raise up to €37 million, according to a memo from Minister for Health Simon Harris.

 

Our Lady’s Children’s Hospital in Crumlin may be turned into an elective adult hospital or a primary care centre after services move to the new national children’s hospital in 2022.

The Crumlin site could have “significant residual value” for the health service as elective hospital facilities or primary care, a confidential report to Cabinet suggests.

If the site were sold, it could raise about €22 million, and possibly up to €37 million, according to the memo from Minister for Health Simon Harris.

However, this estimate is described as “broad-brush” and the memo says that, due to zoning, and other factors it is “not currently possible to provide an accurate view on the current market value of the site”.

Our Lady’s was set up by the Catholic Church in the 1950s and is chaired by the current Archbishop of Dublin, Dr Diarmuid Martin. Its ownership rests with the board of directors, not the church, and is due to transfer to Children’s Health Ireland, the vehicle for amalgamating the Crumlin hospital and the two other children’s hospitals in Dublin into the new national facility at St James’s Hospital.

Residential area

The hospital, located in a residential area close to Dublin city centre and transport links, would have significant development potential. Any money raised from a sale could be used to offset the cost of a new hospital at St James’s, now projected to reach €1.4 billion.

Under a 2014 agreement between Our Lady’s and the HSE, designed to protect the State’s investment in the hospital to date, the property is to be transferred to Children’s Health Ireland for the benefit of children’s health.

The memo says discussions on the future use of the 14.6-acre site are at an early stage. A sale could realise €1.5-€2 million per acre, depending on the views of planning authorities on a permissible development density.

“Also relevant would be the timing of the sale and condition of the market at that time, zoning, prospective purchasers’ view as to whether existing structures are assets or liabilities, and other similar matters.

“Other considerations include the potential for housing development, which could be of interest to the Land Development Agency. ”

The HSE commissioned a property firm to carry out a study of the potential value of the site, which found that while sites in the area in Dublin 12 were generally achieving values of €1.8-€2.5 million per acre, the hospital site is zoned Z15 to protect and provide for institutional and community uses, and only part of the site would attract residential land values.

The cost of demolition was also unknown, but this would reduce the value of the land for prospective purchasers, the study noted.