Dawson Street Area

Re: Dawson Street Area

Postby GrahamH » Sat Jan 05, 2013 11:21 pm

It regularly fascinates me how structures, streetscapes and even building typologies that failed to make it into Frank McDonald's The Destruction of Dublin quite literally vanished from the public consciousness - testament, no doubt, to the comprehensiveness of that work. This intriguing stretch on Nassau Street, though alluded to by Frank in the form of its replacement - Nassau House and Norwich Union House - is one such example. I too have some images of the middle of the terrace displaying a variety of Victorian commercial confections that are worth digging out - the largest possibly being built for the Alliance Assurance Company.

On other news, there are two significant planning applications currently live for restaurant/café/bar/superpub uses on Dawson Street - one in the basement and rear church of the largest terraced town house on the thoroughfare at Number 8 (next to the former Waterstones), and another to all the floors and basement of the former Twohigs Travel premises at the other end of the street and across the road at Number 31. The latter has a delicate late Regency exterior that belies possible earlier origins, with a corner chimneybreast to the rear room.

Both have gone to substantial further information on architectural heritage and operating use grounds, suggesting the lack of pre-planning consultations. It never fails to amaze me how major projects get lobbed in cold to the planning system - frankly, there should be some form of requirement to engage in pre-planning for certain types of development to avoid wasting everyone's time.
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Re: Dawson Street Area

Postby StephenC » Sun Jan 06, 2013 1:11 am

Planner probably feels making time for a preplanning is a waste of his/her time...tea breaks to be had.
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Re: Dawson Street Area

Postby thebig C » Mon Jan 07, 2013 4:10 pm

Hey Graham, if you could dig out some photos that would be great. I will try to take a picture of the photo in The Porterhouse as I will be in the area on Wednesday.

Its true, there is always much outrage at the passing of anything Georgian. However, Victorian architecture is often swept aside without a murmer. Which is odd when you consider how comparitively rare Victoriana is in Dublin.

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Re: Dawson Street Area

Postby StephenC » Thu Oct 10, 2013 11:15 pm

Its funny how planning pressures can be seen unfolding. A case in point is the Dawson Street/ Molesworth Street area which is surely set to see big changes as its older 70s and 80s office blocks come up for demolition and redevelopment.

It seems the passport office is first up..

viewtopic.php?f=15&t=6813&p=115915&hilit=molesworth#p115915

http://www.irishtimes.com/business/sect ... -1.1554069

From Wednesday's Irish Times

A 40-year-old office building occupied by estate agent Jones Lang LaSalle and the Passport Office at Molesworth Street and South Frederick Street in Dublin city centre is in line to be demolished and replaced by a more spacious block under a new planning application submitted to Dublin City Council.
The Irish Property Unit Trust, which owns and manages 58 primarily freehold properties for pension funds and charities, has sought permission to replace the five-storey Molesworth Building and the Frederick Building extending to 7,896sq m (84,990sq ft) with a four-storey block that will have a gross floor area of 12,733sq m (137,055sq ft).
The redevelopment is expected to cost in excess of €30 million.
A spokeswoman for the Office of Public Works said the lease on the Passport Office expires towards the end of next year and it was currently assessing the suitability of other sites in the city centre. It intends to locate the new office in a State-owned property, if one can be identified, to avoid entering into another lease. The current rent for the Passport Office is €529,221 a year.
The planning application describes the existing building as a “bland, characterless and undistinguised” structure of machine-made brick which did not fit in with the surrounding buildings. The proposed replacement would use brick and stone with “vertical stone fins” and “projecting stone sills” to recall the patterns of the white-painted Georgian window reveals. The new development would fit more sympathically with the surrounding Georgian buildings, the applicants claim.
The facade of the new block will be no higher than the current building, which “fails to meet modern occupier requirements”, according to one source.

Shallow height
The source said the potential to carry out an effective refurbishment was compromised by the existing shallow floor-to-ceiling heights of 3m. This is significantly less than the standard 3.75m to 4m height.
Under plans prepared by Henry J Lyons Architects, the new building will, like the present block, have a double basement car park to cater for 34 private car spaces and 58 public car spaces.
There will also be 128 bicycle parking spaces and two motorbike spaces.
The new building will have a terrace setback at fourth- and fifth-floor levels along Molesworth Street, South Frederick Street and Setanta Place.
It will also have a terrace at fifth-floor level at the corner of Molesworth Street and South Frederick Street.
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Re: Dawson Street Area

Postby thebig C » Sun Oct 13, 2013 5:30 pm

GrahamH wrote:It regularly fascinates me how structures, streetscapes and even building typologies that failed to make it into Frank McDonald's The Destruction of Dublin quite literally vanished from the public consciousness - testament, no doubt, to the comprehensiveness of that work. This intriguing stretch on Nassau Street, though alluded to by Frank in the form of its replacement - Nassau House and Norwich Union House - is one such example. I too have some images of the middle of the terrace displaying a variety of Victorian commercial confections that are worth digging out - the largest possibly being built for the Alliance Assurance Company.

On other news, there are two significant planning applications currently live for restaurant/café/bar/superpub uses on Dawson Street - one in the basement and rear church of the largest terraced town house on the thoroughfare at Number 8 (next to the former Waterstones), and another to all the floors and basement of the former Twohigs Travel premises at the other end of the street and across the road at Number 31. The latter has a delicate late Regency exterior that belies possible earlier origins, with a corner chimneybreast to the rear room.

Both have gone to substantial further information on architectural heritage and operating use grounds, suggesting the lack of pre-planning consultations. It never fails to amaze me how major projects get lobbed in cold to the planning system - frankly, there should be some form of requirement to engage in pre-planning for certain types of development to avoid wasting everyone's time.



Hey

I actually to a pic of the framed photo I referred to of this length of Streetscape that's in the Porterhouse. It came out reasonably ok so I forwarded it to Paul. Hopefully, it might appear on Archiseek soon....assuming I didn't make an arse of linking to the pic (quiet possible:P)!!

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Re: Dawson Street Area

Postby gunter » Wed Oct 16, 2013 1:00 am

Passport Office Building

It would be nice to be able to greet news of the proposed demolition of the wretched Passport Office block on Molesworth Street with the satisfaction of long awaited vengeance, but since the proposed replacement block manages to repeat all the same mistakes as its 1974 predecessor, but on a louder scale, we're going to have to put satisfaction on hold.

Image
the 'Molesworth Building', named in desecration of the family that laid out this noble street in 1726.

Image
a view of Molesworth Street just as the hoarding was going up for the demolition of the five houses that made way for this appalling office block.

Whereas the existing block could be described as dull to the point of knowing its own worthlessness, the proposed replacement block, from the images scanned on the planning file [Reg. no. 3312/13], doesn't even have that merit.

As we've come to expect in situations like this, there is an wholly superfluous Archaeological Assessment Report thrown in with the application, produced on this occasion apparently in response to a phantom Recorded Monument number that has somehow managed to linger on the RMP Map of the area long after anything remotely historical was eradicated by the 6m deep double basement car park. As bogus as the Archaeological Assessment Report is, at least it gets much of its background information on the original development of the street from an inter-web article written by Turtle Bunbury, a writer with an interest in history who had gone to the bother of looking it up.

In contrast to the weighty, but pointless, Archaeological Assessment Report, the distinctly light weight report submitted by 'Historic Buildings Consultant', David Slattery, manages to garble even these basic facts about the original development of the street with Slattery telling us that Molesworth Street was developed in the early 18th century on ground ''. . . within the Dawson Estate which adjoined the gardens of Leinster House.''

With a statement that geographically and chronologically challenged, it's hard to take the subsequent architectural evaluation seriously. For what it's worth the evaluation goes on to say exactly what you'd expect it to say; the existing office block is 'bland and repetitive' and the new office block will be 'complex and expressive', from which I think we can conclude that the cheque has cleared.

Molesworth Street was a planned street, therefore it had 'original' houses, all of which were gable fronted and all of which were completed within thirty five years of the initial laying out of the street. At the very least, a proper assessment of the original streetscape should be submitted with any application for redevelopment of this scale and an architectural response provided that both, acknowledges the original plot widths, and is respectful of the two surviving original houses that adjoin the site to the east.

Lobbing in another bog-standard office block with a bog-standard, overblown, corner feature [extra storey] and - concrete fins that echo the plaster reveals of Georgian windows - on a street that was characterized by flush-framed windows and subtle variations in building widths and gable heights, is an indictment of corporate ignorance and the professionals that feed off it.

Molesworth Street deserves better than this.
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Re: Dawson Street Area

Postby wearnicehats » Wed Oct 16, 2013 2:24 pm

no doubt you will pay your €20 and pass on your concerns to DCC. Perhaps include an indication of what you think might look acceptable.
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Re: Dawson Street Area

Postby kefu » Fri Oct 18, 2013 12:23 pm

Anyone know where one might find a picture of the proposed building.
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