A FORMER hospital in Dublin city centre which was bought six years ago by a developer for €30m, has gone back on the market for €3m -- a 90pc price drop.
The sale of a property -- commercial or residential -- for just 10pc of its boom era price is unprecedented.
The huge devaluation of the Hume Street Hospital, just off St Stephen's Green, is likely to reflect on similar commercial properties of the period throughout the capital.
The public offering is in contrast to the sale of many buildings and complexes whose asking prices are kept secret.
The sale property, which comprises six 250-year-old Georgian houses, hit the headlines last summer when thieves climbed to its roof and stripped large amounts of protective lead flashing from the buildings. This allowed rain to run down through it, causing water damage to the elegant 18th century complex. The vandals also took valuable copper piping.
Six of the seven buildings, which formerly comprised the City of Dublin Skin and Cancer Hospital that closed in 2006, are for sale, but not a building to the rear at Ely Place.
Aislinn O Buachalla of Jones Lang Lasalle said: "This building is being priced to sell and we are being very clear about that. The owner wants to sell it. We will be seeking offers over €3m which reflects the fact that the buyer will have responsibilities to these historic buildings and also the substantial investment required to develop them in a manner sensitive to their requirements."
The agents will not confirm who the owners of the building are but have ruled NAMA out of the equation. The complex was bought by developer Michael Kelly in 2006.
Mr Kelly has been operating business centres through his company Glandore Business Centres and last November he was the subject of summary judgment orders requiring him to repay €60m to AIB relating to the hospital. He was listed as being a resident of Eglinton Road in Donnybrook.
Mr Kelly had planned to spend another €20m on top of the €30m purchase price to turn the hospital into a showcase business centre. However, he fell foul of the planning process after being refused a six-storey complex to the rear. The property market crashed at the same time.
Possible use of the historic buildings is as an office complex, a school or college or an elegant corporate headquarters.
The Hume Street Hospital complex will be sold by tender through Jones Lang Lasalle, with the date to be announced in the coming weeks.
The complex is named after Sir Gustavus Hume. In the 1950s the street became notorious as the base of nurse Mamie Cadden, the back street abortionist, two of whose patients were found dead on the street.