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SITE development work has begun on a £150m+ new home development by developers PLC Cairn, on a valley site on the edge of Douglas village in Cork, close to a new school in being built by BAM.

Called Bayly, the 472-unit scheme on Carrigaline Road in Castletreasure is the first scheme of Cairn PLC founded in 2015 in Cork, having acquired a number of sites in Ireland via a €503 million portfolio sale to the Ulster Bank with Lone Star, Project Clear.

The Castletreasure site acquired by Cairn PLC was re-offered in 2016 for €25 million but is now being developed in 2021 by Cairn PLC for 472 units

Cairn bought around the same time another PLC, Glenveagh, which entered the Cork market; while Glenveagh has steadily expanded its presence and has recorded several hundred sales from Cork to date, notably to Blackrock and Maryborough Hill, Cairn has not, to date, made a move from concrete yards to Munster.

Cairn, which has stated its target of building 2,500 Irish homes by 2021, primarily in Dublin and Leinster, has 16 sites listed on its website, including Dublin, Kilkenny, Kildare and Wicklow, has two backstage sites in Galway and Castletreasure Liege.

After acquiring the sites from The Project Clear, Cairn quickly sought to sell three of its Cork sites, the Good Shepherd Convent in Sunday’s Well (now ravaged by fire and in new hands), a site in Victoria Cross and 52 acres in Castletreasure, Douglas, which had been partnered with Cork developers Frinailla, in a £30million bid.

Left unsold at its 2016 price guide of €25m (obtaining offers of around €18m via Savills agents), was the largest site, Castletreasure of 52-acre land opposite Douglas Golf Club , in a green valley. Frinailla had bought it at the height of the market, in the mid-2000s, to displace the Douglas GAA club from the village and finance the exchange through the sale of houses here as well.

Sisk contractors perform preliminary infrastructure and service work.  No main construction contractor has yet been appointed.
Sisk contractors perform preliminary infrastructure and service work. No main construction contractor has yet been appointed.

Cairn PLC obtained planning approval in October 2019 via a Strategic Housing Development (SHD) application with Meitheal Architects for this Castletreasure site, after an oral hearing covering some particular issues such as stormwater management.

    Site activity at Carr's Hill, Co Cork, where a new school is being delivered.
Site activity at Carr’s Hill, Co Cork, where a new school is being delivered.

The planning grant – one of the largest in the Cork region in recent years – is for 234 semi-detached and terraced houses, 160 flats and 78 duplexes, with 4.4ha of parkland and amenity space.

Giving the green light to construction, Bord Pleanala said the development on the edge of Douglas was a reasonable development and “would not seriously impair the residential or visual amenities of the area or nearby properties, would be acceptable in terms of design urban, height, and quantum of development.

Sisk contractors are on site, doing services, infrastructure, a bridge and a partial realignment of the road.

A sales agent has not yet been appointed, and it is unclear whether Cairn has pre-construction agreements in place for the program tranches.

Last night a spokesperson said: ‘Cairn is looking forward to bringing new homes to the market in Castletreasure in 2022 in what will be a multi-phase, multi-year development.

DETAILS: www.cairnhomes.com