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Case Study Projects
6 of 38
1992 - 1994
Woodquay, Dublin 2
Dublin City Council
Royal Institute of the Architects of Ireland / Gold Medal - Commended
1992 - 1994
Royal Institute of the Architects of Ireland / Regional Award
European Building Magazine / Construction Excellence Award
International Award for Energy Conservation /
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In 1992 Dublin Corporation held an international architectural competition to complete their headquarters at Wood Quay. The existence of the phase 1 buildings, completed in 1986, together with the remaining archaeological artifacts on the site, made this a complex and challenging brief. A further major design issue was the view of Christ Church Cathedral, which, through past demolition of the houses on Wood Quay, had been opened up to the quays and required special recognition in any design solution proposed.
Although the new building has a totally different character from the original towers, it shares some of their architectural features – the sheer granite cladding without mouldings, the prismatic geometry, and the horizontal strip windows. Rather than turning its back on the towers, the new building steps up towards them, and stretches out a large wing that fills the space between them. The existing towers are linked by a glazed atrium. This reduces the external mass of the existing buildings and provides a major new entrance at Christ Church.
The building was designed to accommodate a major sculpture on Wood Quay adjoining the main entrance, which was commissioned from the sculptor Michael Warren. The materials used – Wicklow granite and imported Portland stone – are traditional to public buildings in Dublin. The Civic offices design marked a significant development in sustainability. The naturally venting large scale atrium was the practice’s first to be thermo-dynamically modeled using state of the art software, and numerous carefully considered design measures made it the sustainability benchmark development in Dublin for the following decade.