Seven potential developers have registered their interest in the disused ferry terminal in Dun Laoghaire.
The building at St Michael's Pier has been empty since 2014, and Dun Laoghaire-Rathdown Council invited applications to lease it in March.
Now the council says it is examining the submissions received.
"Planning permission exists on the building and immediate surrounds which would allow for a variety of uses," the council said.
"Seven expressions of interest were received and the council is currently assessing a number of submissions.
"The assessment process is under way, and the council will not be making any further comment until this process is complete.
"The chief executive and elected members are all committed to maintaining and upgrading public access to this remarkable amenity and will work to maintain the medium to long-term sustainability of the harbour."
Fianna Fail councillor Cormac Devlin told the Herald: "Whatever goes into the old terminal needs to create footfall.
"One of the big aspects I would look for is that it would connect both the main street and Dun Laoghaire town as a whole to the waterfront.
"It has to act like a linchpin for a spin-off for businesses and hopefully create new businesses as well within the town.
"Dun Laoghaire is the county town of Dun Laoghaire-Rathdown and it is vital that whatever goes into the harbour complements and supports the existing businesses of the town, and the town centre.
"We have to think big for the benefit of the wider area."
Aileen Eglington, the president of Dun-Laoghaire-Rathdown Chamber, said the body had a meeting with the council on the subject of the building a few weeks ago.
"It's a massive building and it's amazing inside," she said. "The building is just beautiful. I think it just needs vision to get the right company there."
It was reported last week that the council had rejected a proposal from US children's entertainment giant Hasbro to build a studio.
It was determined that the application was not within the scope of the request for expressions of interest.