AN international development company has unveiled plans that will significantly regenerate North Main Street, with student apartments and commercial units set for the historic city street.
The Cork and London-based development company, BMOR, today announced their intention to lodge plans for a mixed-use development, comprising a 280-bed student accommodation facility and two new retail units.
The amenities include a gym, laundry facilities, a study, a library, communal working areas, and a landscaped external courtyard.
Significantly, it's also understood that BMOR are in advanced talks to redevelop North Main Street Shopping Centre, which has been blighted by vacancy since its anchor tenant Dunnes closed down more than four years ago.
The prime shopping centre site is thought to be crucial to the regeneration of the street, with speculation that a hotel could be built on the location.
Today's announcement was focused, however, on the proposed €25 million student accommodation scheme.
Key features of this proposal include the planned restoration of Coleman’s Lane which, since medieval times has provided direct access between North Main Street and Grattan Street, and the development of a pocket park, which will be accessible to the general public.
Located in the historic heart of the city, the proposed scheme will serve as a contributor to the much-needed regeneration of North Main Street.
Paul Irwin, Director at BMOR, said: "As a Cork native, it gives me great pleasure and pride to present our ambitious plans for Cork City.
"The scheme, designed by O'Mahony Pike Architects, balances the rich heritage of North Main Street with sleek, innovative, and contemporary design.
"We believe this project will help to kick start the exciting redevelopment plans envisaged for this part of the city.
"Despite all that has transpired with the Covid-19 pandemic, we at BMOR have continued to forge ahead with this and other projects in the Cork area.
"We are confident that this project will not only breathe new life into one of the city’s most historic areas, but that the increased footfall generated as a result of the development will also benefit the existing neighbouring businesses and encourage an influx of new business to North Main Street and its surrounding areas.
"We also envisage that this project will reignite the appetite of up and coming working professionals to consider city centre living in Cork," Mr Irwin added.
"With the assistance of Cork City Council, who have been very supportive of this regeneration initiative since it was initially presented to them, we fully intend to proceed promptly with this venture upon receipt of planning permission," he concluded.
The developers are finalising negotiations with several Cork-based building contractors to undertake the construction of this project which is expected to generate in the region of 150 construction jobs.
Following the completion of the North Main Street development, a further 30 permanent job positions will also be created.
As well as opening a new office on the South Mall, BMOR has underlined their goal of helping to regenerate Cork city and county by embarking on a number of other developments in the area.
These developments form part of BMOR’s plans to grow their portfolio here, the first of which is a 43-house residential development in Killeens, where construction will commence once the lockdown is lifted.