“Ikea is being lined up as the anchor tenant for a proposed development in Cherrywood in southeast Dublin. The site is being developed by Dunloe Ewart, a company formerly controlled by Liam Carroll. A spokesman for Ikea said the company “has been looking at potential new store sites throughout the country”. However, he added the company has “nothing to confirm at this point in time”. Ikea opened its first store in the Republic in Ballymun to much fanfare just over two years ago. The opening of the much-awaited store followed a lengthy delay due to upgrade works on the M50.
Recent accounts for Ikea’s Irish operations show the company had a bumper year in its first full year operating here. The company made a pre-tax profit of €11.4 million in the year to the end of August 2010, making it one of the Ikea’s most profitable European stores. The privately owned Swedish furniture company has 316 stores worldwide. The opening of Ikea’s second Irish store at Cherrywood is contingent on Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown councillors voting on the proposed Cherrywood district centre.
The development of Cherrywood, a 361-hectare site between the M50 and the N11, has been a subject of controversy among councillors. A strategic plan for the development of the area is being drafted by Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council and is expected to go on public display early next year. However, many councillors are opposed to the development of the site, arguing that the retail park in Carrickmines is a more suitable location for further development. Already “The Park” in Carrickmines has a number of retail stores, but no supermarket tenant.
It is understood that Tesco, which has committed to the Carrickmines project, has also been approached to open in Cherrywood. Tesco recently closed its store in Dún Laoghaire shopping centre. Earlier this year the Park Village lands at Carrickmines were rezoned to district centre status, overruling an order by former minister for the environment John Gormley in March 2010 in which he directed councillors to reverse the rezoning.
The situation is complicated by the fact Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council has a specific involvement in the Cherrywood site. In 1997, the council entered a joint venture with Dunloe Ewart, investing €57 million in a 64-acre site. The council took a legal action against the company following the collapse of Liam Carroll’s property empire. After mediation, a deal was struck which saw the company cede two buildings, some 20 acres of development land and four acres of open space to the council, with the council setting up a new property company, DLR Ltd, to handle its share of the site.”
Ikea proposed as anchor tenant at Cherrywood site, by Suzanne Lynch – Irish Times – Friday, August 19, 2011 – http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/finance/2011/0819/1224302701696.html