COMMERCIAL rents in Dublin are now stable at about half their peak and 30pc below the average over the past decade, a new report has found.
Research from estate agents CBRE shows prime retail rents in the capital can be had for about €5,000 per square metre. That compares with €10,000 a metre between 2006 and 2008. That is still ahead of rents in the early part of this century, when prime properties could be rented for less than €4,000 a square metre in 2002.
CBRE's 'Market View' report on Ireland Retail shows Grafton Street remains the most expensive street in the capital followed by Henry Street, where space costs €4,250 per square metre. Despite the number of retailers that have closed their doors in recent months, the occupancy rate on Dublin's streets remains low, says CBRE. The ground-floor vacancy rate now stands at less than 1pc in Dublin, compared with almost 6pc in 2010.
The report also shows the disconnect between population centres and retail developments. Louth now has the most retail space per capita in the country, with 1,220 square metres per thousand people -- almost double the national average. Westmeath has 82pc more shopping centre space than the country overall.
CBRE director of retail Michael Harrington said: "We are now entering a particularly interesting period for the Irish retail sector. Prime retail locations in Dublin and across the country are becoming particularly attractive to potential retail entrants."