This project for a tall building in the Temple Bar area of Dublin is a response to the street-making idea in the city. The Dublin Planning Policy said ‘It is appropriate to produce inventive, modern, architectural design, echoing rather than mimicking traditional architectural forms, and, above all, demonstrating, in modern terms, the unique qualities of this part of Temple Bar which lies within the former Medieval walled city.’
The site of the project is at the corner of Lord Edward Street and Upper Exchange Street. Upper Exchange Street, which approaches the crest of the hill where the Castle and Cathedral were built, is the medieval route from the quays to the Castle.
The project comprises the five-storey south block and the nine-storey tower separated by a granite staircase which gives residents access to the rear courtyard garden. A recess formed in the plan which addresses Exchange Street, together with the copper-clad iroko and steel overhanging canopy, forms an entrance portal eights storeys high.
The south block has one apartment per floor, the north block two, which share a lift and access stair. The seventeen apartments have east-west orientation with views of the street and views of the garden. Generous terraces are located at the third, fifth and eighth floor levels. Apartments at higher levels have a southerly view towards the Dublin mountains.
Where the tower emerges above the south block a canopy provides sun shade to the apartments below. A cut in the canopy lights the gap between the buildings. The south block extends at the rear to provide a crèche at two levels.
The plan of the tower is American in spirit - the entrance lobby opens directly off the street - a lift and staircase serve two apartments per floor - one one-bed and one two-bed apartment. The stairs have a view at every half-level towards the gate of Dublin Castle. The structure is in situ concrete. The building is finished externally with thick, jointed clay brickwork, painted render and iroko/oak panelling.
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