Irish Students Suggest Building Skyscrapers Could Attract Foreign Businesses To Ireland Post-Brexit

Author:Mr Michael Jackson

Teams of students from across Ireland have been putting together ideas to boost economic growth in Ireland after Brexit as part of law firm Matheson's Vision 2020 University Challenge competition; Entries included removing height restrictions for high-rise buildings in Dublin and creating certain tax relief schemes for companies linked to corporate social responsibility initiatives and encouraging our Irish abroad home; The winning team members were awarded €1,000 each and a place on the Matheson Summer Internship programme.

Removing height restrictions and allowing the construction of skyscrapers and high-rise buildings in Dublin and other cities could attract foreign businesses to Ireland post-Brexit.

That's according to Aisling O'Brien, Annie Conlan, Susan Crowley and Shauna Fenton, a 4th Year Trinity College Dublin team that entered Irish law firm Matheson's Vision 2020 University Challenge. Undergraduate students were asked to consider a legal reform that could help boost Irish economic growth in the wake of Brexit.

Current laws prevent buildings from exceeding 50m, except in designated parts of Dublin centre. For comparison, the tallest commercial building in Dublin is Google's headquarters, at 67m; London's Shard is 309m. Commercial and residential space is scarce in the capital, driving up rents; and subsequent urban sprawl pushes businesses and workers further out of the city centre, discouraging growth and investment.

UCD's Team BGR, Eimear O'Leary, Tara English, Rachael Toland-Burke, proposed the creation of a Business Growth Relief tax scheme, which would classify certain Irish businesses into classes. The students suggested that each class would benefit from certain tax reliefs; businesses would move up a class by meeting certain criteria, like CSR initiatives, number of employees and encouraging Irish expatriates to return home.

The competition was open to all disciplines in all universities across Ireland. A shortlist of five teams included entries from Trinity College Dublin, Maynooth University, National University of Ireland, Galway and University College Dublin.

The shortlisted entries were invited to pitch to a panel of judges at Matheson's Dublin office this week. Judges included Philip Merrills-Dearn, EMEA Head of Legal at Twitter, Anne-Marie Bohan, Partner at Matheson, Patrick...

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