Athlone has county’s highest commercial vacancy rate

Athlone, at 18.3 per cent, is the area with the highest commercial vacancy rate in Westmeath.

Westmeath’s commercial vacancy rate stood at 11 per cent in the last quarter of 2017, representing an increase of 0.5 per cent compared to the same period in 2016, according to the latest GeoDirectory Geoview Commercial Vacancy Report.

The research reveals that 62 per cent of the vacant commercial addresses in Westmeath have been empty for longer than three years.

Overall, the national commercial vacancy rate in Ireland dropped slightly from 13.5 per cent in 2016 to 13.3 per cent in Q4, 2017.

Commercial activity remains concentrated on the east coast of Ireland, with the greater Dublin area accounting for 33.2 per cent of the overall national stock. This is in stark contrast to Connacht and Ulster, with these provinces only accounting for 13.7 per cent and 7.8 per cent of the national stock respectively.

Commenting on the findings of the report, Dara Keogh, CEO of GeoDirectory said: “This report shows that while there are signs that the economic recovery is beginning to spread outside Dublin, there is still a stubbornly high commercial vacancy rate, particularly along the west coast of Ireland.

“Given that there is also a high proportion of long term vacant commercial buildings, there is significant scope to redevelop and put these properties to better use, particularly as discussion around the National Planning Framework continues.”

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