Ireland’s central bank agreed to pay about 8 million euros ($10 million) for a half-completed Dublin office block that’s synonymous with the real-estate crash, according to a person familiar with the matter.
The bank will buy the building on North Wall Quay from the National Asset Management Agency, said the person, who asked not to be identified because the details are private. Anglo Irish Bank Corp. had planned to use the tower as its headquarters before the company’s collapse helped push Ireland toward the international bailout the country agreed in 2010.
“We don’t comment on speculation about individual transactions, but we’ve previously indicated that we are optimistic that we will secure a satisfactory deal in respect of this property in the medium term and that remains our position,” Ray Gordon, a spokesman for the asset management agency, known as NAMA, said by e-mail.
The building came to symbolize the demise of Ireland’s economy. It was constructed by Liam Carroll, one of the country’s biggest developers, who has seen many of his assets seized by banks. NAMA was created by the Irish government to purge banks of toxic property loans.
“No deal has been finalized,” Neil Whoriskey, a central bank spokesman, said by telephone today. “We don’t comment on the specifics of individual negotiations.”
The skeleton office block is “becoming a landscape photo for Ireland internationally,” Brendan McDonagh, NAMA’s chief executive officer, told lawmakers on Oct. 26. “Everybody who comes to Dublin to see us wants to see the Anglo Irish Bank building; they ask the taxis to bring them around,” he said. “It is a landscape eyesore and it needs to be dealt with.”
Irish commercial real-estate prices have fallen about 65 percent since September 2007, Investment Property Databank Ltd. said in January. Office rents were down about 55 percent since the market’s peak at the end of last year and may increase over the next 18 months, broker Lisney said in a report.
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