The last five years in particular, has witnessed major growth in Industrial & Commercial Constriction particularly with a proliferation of large data centre construction in Ireland by major foreign companies.
<i>(First Published in CIF <em>Construction </em>Magazine (September 2016)</i>
Most notably, in 2016, Facebook commenced work on their ambitious Clonee data centre in Co. Meath.
This €200m development will be supplied by 100% renewable wind energy, utilising the Irish climate to create an innovative approach to data storage.
“Ireland’s temperate oceanic climate is a big attraction for foreign technology companies setting up storage.”
Industrial & Commercial Construction
Data centres create a vast amount of heat; in order to house an efficient data centre a climate like Ireland’s is preferable over locations like California or mainland Europe which can be subject to heatwaves.
One of the most contentious issues on the geopolitical landscape in the last decade has been that of privacy in relation to internet use.
This year, Microsoft benefited from a ruling by a United States appellate court which ruled that the United States Government could not force Microsoft to hand over customer emails stored on servers in Ireland.
The unique Irish data laws make Ireland an attractive prospect for setting up shop in as they can offer assurances to customers that their privacy can be maintained through Irish data laws.
This combination of climate and data security has spurred on construction of data centres around the country with Apple’s €850m data centre development near Athenry, Co. Galway receiving final approval from An Bord Pleanála in August 2016.
Works are expected to commence on-site by the end of 2016 and should create up to 600 jobs in the construction industry, with a further 50 jobs for Apple employees once the centre becomes operational.
Microsoft has on-site and planned data centres at Grange Castle Business Park Clondalkin, Co. Dublin.
There are also pre-plans for a further four data centres designated for the Clondalkin site in the coming years which will amount up to €890m investment by Microsoft to scale up their operations in Ireland.
Amazon also commenced works on their new data centre at the former Jacobs Biscuit site on the Belgard Road in Dublin 24.
This €100m data centre solidifies the company’s presence in Ireland with offices being created in Cork and Dublin to house new operations for the large multi-national company.
Activity in the Commercial Sector has continued to grow strongly month on month in Ireland, primarily in Dublin.
The demand for high quality office buildings is on the rise and Ireland is seen as an attractive option for foreign companies to relocate or expand their operations into and for overseas investors looking for a high return on investment.
This is a result of many outlying factors. These include an open economy located within the European Union, an established business location, competitive tax rates, transparent markets, a young and highly educated workforce and favourable flight access to Europe and beyond.
Dublin is currently home to some of the world’s largest corporate firms including Yahoo, Google, Facebook, Twitter, Workday, Air BnB, Amazon and many global financial and legal firms.
The pipeline for development of new Grade A office accommodation has seen an increase in planning applications and this will continue to rise in the coming years to cope with demand.
To testify this, Construction Information Services (CIS) currently has over €1bn worth of office building schemes across the country, either at a planning or a later construction stage, on their database.
Examples of planned Grade A office developments in Dublin can be seen in the table below:
€45m Mix-Use Office Development
5,000 sq.m. over 4 storeys
€47m Office Development
27,751sq.m. over 6 storeys
€55m Office Development
21,099 sq.m. over 6 storeys
€110m Office Development – Blocks A and B
Sir John Rogersons Quay, Dublin
25,227 sq m over 8 Storeys
€30m Office Development
IPUT Management Services Limited
Molesworth Street, Dublin
13,000 sq.m. of over 5 storeys
€22m Office development
4-5 Harcourt Road, Dublin
7,000 sq.m. over 8 storeys
€111m office Development – Block D
Ballymore Group and Oxley Holdings
North Wall Quay, Dublin
60,000 sq.m. over 9 and 7 storeys
Outside of Dublin, plans have been approved for an €8m office development for Shannon Commercial Properties in Shannon, Co. Clare.
The development calls for the provision of a 4 storey building consisting of over 5,000 sq.m. of office space.
Tenders are currently being sought from contractors, with work expected to start later this year and be completed in late 2017.
In Cork, Apple Operations Europe has received a favourable planning decision for a large scale extension consisting of an additional 15,000 sq.m. of office space at their premises in the Holyhill Industrial Estate outside of Cork City, as they look to consolidate their presence in Ireland.
*The costings on these projects are indicative and are based on a price per sq.m. for shell and core only.
** This CIS data was accurate on 24 August 2016. Visit www.cisireland.com for the latest project updates on these schemes.
“Construction Information Services (CIS) is Ireland’s market leader in supplying real-time information on construction projects from early planning to on-site stages.” For more information visit www.cisireland.com or call 01 2999 200
Click Here to read the full article in this September issue of Construction