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Dublin: 13°C Tuesday 19 October 2021

Government could have saved €1 million on hotel to house homeless families

A €4 million bid is being considered for a Nama hotel in Tallaght. It could have been taken off the market for €3 million back in 2012.

A plaque in the Molesworth Street doorway where Jonathan Corrie died.
A plaque in the Molesworth Street doorway where Jonathan Corrie died.
Image: Leah Farrell/Photocall Ireland

A NAMA HOTEL in Tallaght being considered by the Government as possible accommodation for the homeless could have been picked up by local authorities for a million euro less than the current asking price, just two years ago.

Environment Minister Alan Kelly announced in the wake of this month’s summit on homelessness — convened following the death of Jonathan Corrie in a doorway close to Leinster House — that a hotel controlled by the agency would be used to house families who found themselves homeless.

At the Public Accounts Committee today, Nama CEO Brendan McDonagh revealed that both Dublin City Council and South Dublin County Council were considering deals to buy a hotel in Tallaght.

“Discussions are ongoing with the Department of the Environment on who should acquire it,” McDonagh said.

“The hotel is under receivership — and the receiver has a number of offers on the hotel, but he has agreed a price just over four million euro.”

Brendan McDonagh

The property was offered previously to councils, McDonagh revealed.

But local authorities decided not to go ahead with bids because “they didn’t think it was suitable for their requirements”.

Responding to questions from Fine Gael TD Patrick O’Donovan, McDonagh said councils would have been aware of the hotel’s availability for “at least two, two-and-a-half years”.

Patrick O'Donovan

When pressed, the Nama boss conceded that the property could have been taken off the market for “about €3 million” had an offer had been made back in 2012.

“So it’s gone up a million and now they’re interested in it?” O’Donovan asked.

“Well… yeah,” said McDonagh.

Read: ‘NAMA’ hotel to house homeless Dublin families

Read: In his own words: Jonathan Corrie on homelessness – and hoping for a chance

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