The ghost estates - housing developments that were abandoned when the Irish property boom hit the skids - are being targeted by foreign banks who are considering demolishing them and turning them back into greenfield sites.
Brendan McDonagh, the head of Ireland's National Asset Managment Agency (NAMA), told the Irish Independent that just as his agency was considering returning land purchased for property development back into its original agricultural state, some foreign owned banks Ulster Bank were also looking at similar solutions.
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McDonagh added that the ideal solution would be to have people live in the ghost estates, but where that was impractical and the estate was predominantly unoccupied then levelling it could be the best option.
"Unfortunately, some of these ghost estates are in places they shouldn't have been built in, in the first place and demand isn't there," McDonagh said.