Irish Water has initiated a search for new offices to replace its headquarters in Dublin city centre.
In a request for information, which it issued last week, Uisce Éireann – as it is officially known – asked commercial real estate advisers and interested parties to provide it with options in the 65,000-80,000sq ft range. The proposed office sizes suggest that the State agency is looking to accommodate 600-800 workers at its new premises.
Irish Water’s lease on its existing 55,000sq ft office at Colville House on Talbot Street is due to expire in February 2026. While the agency initially occupied the property under the terms of a lease assignment from Bank of Ireland in 2013, it went on to sign a 10-year lease in its own right once the bank exercised the break option on its original agreement in 2016. The Bank of Ireland had, for its part, leased the premises since the year 2000 before vacating them in 2011 as part of a wider retrenchment programme.
Irish Water’s decision to enter into a new 10-year lease at Colville House in February 2016 was somewhat controversial at the time, coming just three days after that year’s general election and at a point when concerns were being expressed about its future.
Defending the move and its timing then, a spokeswoman for Irish Water said: “29 months ago Irish Water took over the remaining term of the lease held by the previous tenant of Colville House.
“The lease we took over ended on February 28th, 2016. The end date of the lease was therefore predetermined 29 months ago.
“The signing of a new lease was simply a case of Irish Water ensuring it held a current lease for the building it occupies, ie Irish Water acting like any other normal business.”