New heights for Limerick
Up Limerick! The announcement this week of the creation of a Special Purpose Vehicle by the local authority to deliver €500m of investment infrastructure over four strategic sites in the city is the most positive news for Limerick that we've heard for many years.
The sites are located at Henry Street and Rutland Street in the city, Fernhill on the banks of the Shannon and Castletroy just outside the city. Over one million square feet of additional real estate space will be provided by 2021 and 5,000 people will be employed. According to Minister of State for Tourism and Sport Patrick O'Donovan: "This will take Limerick - a city already on the up - to new heights. The fact that it is 'plan led' as distinct from 'developer led' will mean the city and county are planned strategically and that the infrastructure and investment is exactly what is needed."
For too long Limerick had been the butt of jokes as a result of some unfortunate criminal activity. Thankfully it would seem that these issues, by and large, are a thing of the past. Limerick, like many Irish cities, has been experiencing a real shortage in housing: since 2006, house commencements have declined from 2,543 to a low of 176 in 2015, a drop of 94pc. A typical three-bed semi-d starter home on the edge of the city currently costs from €170,000 to €200,000. A good part of the new initiative will be the provision of large numbers of well-located houses.