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The Square shopping centre in Tallaght goes on the market for over €230m

The 27-year-old development is one of the last large-scale commercial properties on Nama’s books.

Image: Peter Moloney

THE SQUARE SHOPPING centre in Tallaght has been formally placed on the market with a controlling interest in the development going for €233 million.

Earlier this year Nama appointed agents Cushman & Wakefield and JLL to oversee the sale of the 27-year-old shopping centre.

Today the agents confirmed that the centre, which is one of the last, large-scale standalone properties on Nama’s books, is on the market.

The Square, which had 22 million visitors through its doors last year, features more than 160 retail units. Some of its anchor tenants include Tesco, Debenhams and Dunnes Stores.

Since it opened in 1990, a number of units in the centre were sold to owner-occupiers and groups of investors. However, over the past six years the current vendor has consolidated its ownership.

This means the new owners will take control of 118 retail units, a 13-screen cinema and also get a controlling stake in the centre’s management company.

The current owner is generating rental income of nearly €14 million and nearly three-quarters of this is secured for the next five years.

Recent accounts filed for the firm that runs the shopping centre, The Square Management Ltd, showed that it made a loss of €1.1 million during the year that ended 30 September 2016.

Expansion

Earlier this year, planning permission was secured by the shopping centre for two separate extensions after a lengthy legal battle with Dunnes Stores.

After it originally secured planning permission from An Bord Pleanála for the €40 million expansion in 2014, the shopping centre was brought to court by the retailer.

the-square-tallaght-1 A render of the proposed development Source: The Square Tallaght

Dunnes Stores, the largest shop at the Square, said that its customers would be inconvenienced as they would be forced to travel further as a result of the new extension.

Earlier this year, the Square got the all-clear to proceed after a judge found against Dunnes.

If plans to extend the shopping centre proceed, the northern extension will include a new 65,000 sq ft department store and an additional eight retail units, while the southern extension will provide a new 59,470 sq ft, single-level unit.

Car parking spaces at the shopping centre will also increase to 2,800 after the development of a new six-level multi-storey car park.

Shopping centre deals

A recent report from property group Savills highlighted that 21 shopping centres were traded across Ireland in 2016 at an overall price of more than €1.9 billion.

The Blanchardstown centre was sold by Green Property to US institutional investor Blackstone for €950 million during the spring. The deal was Ireland’s single most expensive property deal to date.

Liffey Valley, which is also located in west Dublin, was bought for €630 million in December by Germany’s largest public pension group, BVK.

Away from the capital, Whitewater Shopping Centre in Newbridge, Kildare, the biggest regional shopping centre in the country, was also bought by a German fund – DEKA Immobilien – for €180 million.

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Written by Killian Woods and posted on Fora.ie

Read: Nama has paid over €115 million to receivers since the property crash >

Read: Carton House Hotel on sale for €60 million >

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