Proposed skyscraper to be visible from all over Cork City

Proposed skyscraper to be visible from all over Cork City

A view of the planned tower from Merchant’s Quay near Mary Elmes Bridge.

IRELAND’s tallest building, which is to be built in the heart of Cork City subject to planning permission, will be visible for miles from locations across the city and further afield.

New computer-generated images of the 34-storey skyscraper hotel at Custom House Quay revealed that, as well as being visible from around the Custom House Quay area, it would be visible from areas like the South Link Road, Grand Parade, and Western Road.

As the tallest building in Ireland, the proposed tower would be visible from many parts of the city, including this sightline from the Grand Parade along Oliver Plunkett St, with the Berwick Fountain in the foreground.
As the tallest building in Ireland, the proposed tower would be visible from many parts of the city, including this sightline from the Grand Parade along Oliver Plunkett St, with the Berwick Fountain in the foreground.

It would also be visible from areas such as Military Hill, The Lough, Sunday’s Well and near Páirc Uí Chaoimh.

If approved and constructed, the 140m development proposed by Tower Holdings would become Ireland’s tallest building by a significant margin, outstripping the current tallest building, the 79m-high Capital Dock in Dublin.

In planning documents filed with City Hall, the developers say it is fully intended that the Custom House Tower will become a “defining new signature building” for Cork.

The New York-based company also said that the building would not obstruct or have a detrimental effect on Cork’s iconic skyline of church spires, or the Elysian.

The €140m project is to include retail units, cultural spaces, food and beverage businesses, office space, recreational areas, and a micro-distillery, which the developer says could create up to 800 jobs.

Recent planning applications for tall buildings in Cork have led to a debate between planners, developers, architects, heritage groups, and the general public about how Cork’s skyline should develop in the future.

Competing petitions are currently in place both in favour and opposed to a tall building on the Custom House Quay site.

Tower Holdings was recently granted planning permission for the 15-storey Prism office development on the triangular site next to the city bus station.

That development was objected to by heritage body An Taisce who said it would ruin views of historical buildings, and that a building of this height would set a precedent for others in the city centre island.

However, their view was countered by the former head of planning on Cork City Council, Pat Ledwidge who said: “The urban form of any city must evolve, as must the nature and use of buildings. If this evolution does not occur, the sustainable development of the city will not occur.”

An initial decision date for the Custom House Quay site is September 24 but further information could be sought from the developers, pushing a decision date back further.

A view of the planned tower from South Mall. 
A view of the planned tower from South Mall. 

Cork Chamber had backed City Hall’s €6.5m plan to transform infrastructure around the docklands as the city gets set to expand to its waterfront.

The development of the docklands, including the new Custom House Quay skyscraper, is estimated to create up to 29,000 jobs, with 15,000 homes expected to be built over the next two to three decades.

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