Saturday 10 December 2016

Rehab to sell HQ in prime city location for over €12m

Peter Flanagan Commercial Property Editor

Published 20/04/2016 | 02:30

The Rehab Group Headqarters in Sandymount, Dublin
The Rehab Group Headqarters in Sandymount, Dublin

Rehab is to sell its south Dublin headquarters in a move that will free up one of the highest profile development sites in the city.

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The charity is seeking upwards of €12m for its 5.15 acre property in Sandymount in the heart of Dublin 4 close to the sea.

It has retained property agents Lisney and Savills to manage the sale. Bids are expected by next week but Rehab will remain on site for up to two years after the deal closes or until the charity secures an alternative home.

Rehab chief executive Mo Flynn said the sale was part of a greater change within the charity.

"Roslyn Park is an exceptional site with excellent future potential and we must maximise its value in order to meet both our existing obligations and to better achieve our mission which is to help individuals on their journey to be independent," she said.

Rehab has had its head office operations in Sandymount since 1983 and currently employs 160 people in Roslyn Park. Roslyn Park College, the flagship training centre run by Rehab's training division also operates on the Sandymount site.

Under the terms of any sale, the existing Roslyn Park College building on site will be sold and leased back on either a short or long term contract.

The property also incorporates the James Gandon-designed Gandon House which was built in 1790. It is a protected structure.

Roslyn Park faces on to Strand Road, but the sale will also include a house at 12 Seafort Avenue. That is described as being "in need of refurbishment".

That portion of the site is zoned Z1 residential while the main campus is zoned Z15 "to provide for institutional, educational, recreational, community, green infrastructure and other uses" under the Dublin City Council Development Plan 2010-2017.

Under the terms of Z15, residential development is "open for consideration", which may make it possible to develop the entire site over time.

Ross Shorten of Lisney and John Swarbrigg of Savills said that the property "combines a remarkable coastal location with exceptional development potential" and suggested that "this site presents a unique opportunity to deliver a high-end luxury residential development to the market".

The property hit the headlines two years ago when then Rehab chief executive Angela Kerins rejected claims she discussed selling the charity's headquarters with a developer who brought her on a helicopter trip.

Wicklow businessman John Kelly had claimed he spent over €100,000 on flights and hospitality for Ms Kerins and other Rehab officials to increase his chances of buying the she site.

At the time, Rehab released a statement claiming that the charity "at no point" considered selling or transferring the property, known as Roslyn Park, to Mr Kelly.

"Ms Kerins knew Mr Kelly personally some years ago.

"However, her (social) dealings with him in the past were completely unrelated to the business of the Rehab Group," the statement said.

Mr Kelly told the Irish Independent then that he did discuss the potential sale with Ms Kerins and Rehab's PR adviser Michael Parker. Mr Kelly said he flew Ms Kerins and Mr Parker to London on a private jet, where they dined in a Michelin-star restaurant.

Mr Kelly insisted he did not make an offer for the lands but discussed the prospect of acquiring the headquarters with Ms Kerins and Mr Parker.

Irish Independent

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