COUNTY HALL has been urged to deliver the extra funding needed to purchase Passage West’s dockyard quickly after it entered into preliminary discussions with the owners.
In November, Cork County Council received €1.9 under the Government’s Urban Regeneration and Development Fund (URDF) and plans to match this with €625,000 of its own funds.
The eight-acre site is being offered on the open market for a guide price in the region of €2.5m.
Councillor Michael ‘Frick’ Murphy (SF) said action needs to be taken by the local authority to find the cash in its own reserves to make up the cost of buying the site.
Seamus McGrath (FF) said the Council can’t afford to be complacent about the purchase.
“The money [allocated under URDF] isn’t the amount that would acquire the dockyard. The window for this funding will move on and it would be a very significant transaction but we can’t sit on our hands. We need to actively pursue this,” he added.
County Hall senior executive officer for municipal districts, Jim Molloy, said “preliminary discussions” with the dockyard owners have already taken place but the Council will have to consider the final price before deciding whether to purchase the site.
“We are in the process of engaging with them. There is a lot work that goes into that,” he added.
The site has been described as potentially “transformative” for the town by local representatives.
It contains several hundred metres of road frontage, three access points and six terraced houses encompassed in a stone wall boundary. The site was purchased in the early 2000s but then sold to the Doyle shipping group for €2.75m, having previously been bought for €25m by Howard Holdings.
The URDF has been established to support sustainable development, through the regeneration of Ireland’s five cities and large towns with populations greater than 10,000.