Central Bank for sale with €60m price tag
The Central Bank is to put its headquarters on Dame Street and two other premises on Dublin's College Green on the market in the coming months, with sources estimating they could fetch upwards of €60m.
The bank expects to be able to start moving into its new purpose-built office accommodation on North Wall Quay by the end of this year.
The iconic headquarters on Dame Street, which was completed in 1978 and officially opened in December 1979, is expected to be put up for sale, along with 6-8 College Green and 9 College Green, in the autumn. Lisney estate agents will be managing the sales.
The main Central Bank building, designed by architect Sam Stephenson, could command a price in excess of €40m should it be sold separately.
Together with the commercial buildings at numbers 9 and 6 to 8 College Green, the entire lot is expected to command a price in excess of €60m.
A lease the bank holds on premises in nearby Iveagh Court expires in May next year and it is not expected that this will be extended.
The anticipated sale price falls considerably short of the €140m development cost of the new headquarters.
It is understood that the three premises will be offered to the market in one or more lots.
The Irish Independent understands that while the pricing for the properties has not yet been determined, this is expected to be completed in the coming weeks with active marketing getting underway after that.
The upcoming sale of the Central Bank's existing headquarters is not expected to have any impact on the timing of the movement of its employees to its new headquarters in the docklands.
One industry source said typically it was preferable to show buildings to prospective purchasers while they were still occupied as opposed to lying vacant.
Staff members have also been informed via an internal message that the 'golden ball' artwork outside the Dame Street building, the Crann an Óir, will remain on Dame Street, and will not be transported to the new North Wall Quay site.
The decision was made after discussion with "local stakeholders and the wider arts and architectural community", staff were informed.
The bank said there was a "strong consensus" that the artwork is an "integral part of the fabric of the plaza and an important site-specific public art installation".
"The widespread view is that Dame Street is its rightful home," the bank told staff.
The Crann an Óir (tree of gold) sculpture is also used as the Central Bank's official logo. The bank said that this will continue.