Strong bidding was seen at a recent auction when 80 acres of unzoned land with development potential near the town of Kilcock on the Meath-Kildare border sold for well over its guide price.
Auctioneer Will Coonan had been guiding more than €1.5m for the land parcel and bidding opened at €1.35m before it petered out at €2.15m.
That equated to €26,875 per acre which is not alone well over the guide of €18,750 per acre, but more than double the average price of agricultural land in the region.
At that stage in the auction, the auctioneer withdrew the property and entered negotiations with the highest bidder, a Dublin solicitor, who subsequently agreed a deal at a higher price.
A Sherry FitzGerald survey of land prices in the first quarter of this year showed values were highest in the mid-east region of Ireland, which includes Kildare and Meath, where they average €11,550 per acre.
Located at Newtownmoyaghy, the 80-acre parcel adjoins the Kilcock Environs development boundary and has 875m of frontage along the Moyglare Road, as well as frontage along the Rye river, which led the auctioneer to brand it as a Catchment on the Rye, in deference to the famous American book The Catcher in the Rye.
The Kilcock property is also adjacent to a residential development known as Millerstown, the current phase of which is less than 500m away.
The premium on agricultural land prices paid by the Dublin solicitor reflects relatively strong hope value for the farm land which comes with 11.5 acres of forestry.
Mr Coonan said the price levels reflect the hopes of investors that in the medium to long-term they will achieve zoning for the property.
The property is about 2km east of Kilcock, 5km from Maynooth and 35km from Dublin which means that not alone is it within the Dublin commuter belt but it is also convenient to the university town of Maynooth and Intel, a major employer in Leixlip, both of which are generating demand for housing in the area. Kilcock-based commuters can avail of a choice of bus routes, a train service, as well as the M4 motorway linking Kilcock to a number of towns as well as the capital.
The 2016 census showed the town had a population of 6,093.