Smithfield, Dublin

Re: Smithfield, Dublin

Postby Peter Fitz » Tue Aug 24, 2010 9:51 am

Don't suppose they plan to complete the other end of the square in any kind of coherent fashion as part of these works?
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Re: Smithfield, Dublin

Postby StephenC » Tue Aug 24, 2010 11:09 am

This is the point of the works. Check out the plans in Devin's link.
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Re: Smithfield, Dublin

Postby ushers8 » Tue Aug 24, 2010 2:54 pm

There's been alot more progression since that picture was taken.
Every single paving slab and cobblestone has been removed from that area.

From what I've read, they paln to put a new dublin bikes bike stand and a childrens play area there.
Its the southern end of the square that needs the most work.
I wonder if they'll start on that after the northern end is completed.
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Re: Smithfield, Dublin

Postby Devin » Wed Sep 15, 2010 5:12 pm

Image

Smithfield in 2000. The McGarry NiEanaigh remaking of the square has been done but the west side is not yet developed.
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Re: Smithfield, Dublin

Postby Paul Clerkin » Thu Sep 16, 2010 3:31 am

A couple from the same time - during the dig on the site... apols for the crappy digital - top of the range at the time
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Re: Smithfield, Dublin

Postby Devin » Thu Sep 16, 2010 1:59 pm

Nice. I was still on neg at the time :">



Some more pics of the buildings at the top corner:


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It was was totally unecessary to demolish that Victorian pub, Bo Derrols. It was just runaway boom excess. A corner historic building like that should be an asset in your scheme. If the Thomas Reads had opened there instead of where it did, it would probably be still open, Thomas Read's other problems notwithstanding. I new some new sports type bar has opened where it was.

If ya heard developer Paddy Kelly in the paper recently, jaysus your heart would bleed ... his indignation about people's feelings toward Smithfield ....... which in any case is more about Smithfield generally than what he built.




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The cement-rendered one to the right of the pub was an early building - the tell-tale corner chimney breast was visible through the shop window ..... mass bulldozing around here.




As they were coming down, 2003 direction:

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Re: Smithfield, Dublin

Postby Paul Clerkin » Thu Sep 16, 2010 2:13 pm

more from the archaeological dig
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Re: Smithfield, Dublin

Postby Devin » Thu Sep 16, 2010 3:01 pm

Great record. Don't think ANYTHING there was kept, was it? any pits or anything ..


A warehouse on the Queen Street side:
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Re: Smithfield, Dublin

Postby soulsearcher » Thu Sep 16, 2010 11:59 pm

Thanks a lot for those pics guys. a timely reminder of what was lost.

Incidently, I'm not sure if this has been discussed elsewhere but life is definitely coming back into Smithfield. The vacant commercial premises are slowly being taken over by artists. Several spaces along the western side have had temporary art events. At least 3 of them are (semi?) permanent. There are daily life drawing classes at Studio 54, graphic design classes at Block T Cultural Centre (the run down 'Chinatown' building/formerly Tullys Tiles) to name but a few. I passed by an alcohol-free disco one night two that looked interesting in another vacant retail unit. Theres some drama group in another one. The lighthouse cinema seems to be busy at least the odd few times ive been there recently. I've heard that Chief O'Neills Hotel is going to re-open as a hostel. Anyone else heard this? And finally, Thomas Reads has re-opened under a new name - presumably new owner as well seeing as they no longer exist as a going concern.

So...three cheers for the recession!!!...the Smithfield 'cultural quarter' can now finally bear fruit :)
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Re: Smithfield, Dublin

Postby thebig C » Fri Sep 17, 2010 11:36 am

Thanks for those pics. Looks like some quite nice building were actually lost, better in fact then alot of the 18/19th century dross that is currently listed!

Just looking through the thread, it seems that the dreams of a European style piazza are just as far off as when I read about them in a Times supplement when I was in school circa 1997!!

TBH, I actually wouldn't have minded the 23 storey tower, if it meant a more dense footprint and the retention of a couple of those buildings.....rather then the squat 13 storey slab and all the 8 storey monoliths we ended up with.

Also, I will be lit upon for saying this, but the childrens court does Smithfield no favours....just fills it with more reasons not to go there!

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Re: Smithfield, Dublin

Postby Smithfield Resi » Fri Sep 17, 2010 5:30 pm

Observers of the cobble sett flexible vs rigid laying technique controversy may wish to amble over to Smithfield at the moment. The setts are being relaid in what I would consider to be very odd manner (set in concrete, not sure what the jointing plan is) which appears to be taking them ages..

..by contrast I have seen a Prague cobble expert lay almost the same area in a day and a half (including a stunning coat of arms set into the pavement portion).
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Re: Smithfield, Dublin

Postby Devin » Fri Sep 17, 2010 6:32 pm

Thanks, S Resi .... set in concrete? shudder. Even the TB rigid laying was on sand ...





Image

Smithfield Market about to rise - Georgian grain, North King Street, in the background.




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Smithfield Market about to rise - Georgian grain, Queen Street, in the background.




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And done.




There was a little food market at the bottom of Smithfield today. Oh, picture of urban health. Just don't go to Winetavern Street or High Street:
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Re: Smithfield, Dublin

Postby soulsearcher » Fri Sep 17, 2010 9:05 pm

more great pictures of the 'urbicide' that took place. (the term is valid for the time being as the place has been dead since they redeveloped it).

glad to see that friday afternoon market hasnt died a death. i still dont get the time slot though. employed people in ireland go to the pub after work on a friday and unemployed people simply cant afford the luxury of organic bread and hummus.
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Re: Smithfield, Dublin

Postby gunter » Wed Sep 22, 2010 10:42 pm

I meant to post this earlier

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The exhibition is at 'The Complex', 18 - 21 Smithfield.
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Re: Smithfield, Dublin

Postby StephenC » Tue Sep 28, 2010 7:56 pm

I have to say that the Smithfield public domain works are progressing at a snails pace. All that has been done to date is the lifting and relaying of cobbles at the northern end and some new lighting. Why is it taking so long to get some steam behind this work. The press release for the scheme stated that the works would be completed in December 2010. That must have been a typo because there is no way they will have gotten even a third of the way there by then.

The condition of this area of the city is truly awful. Walking around today it just struck me how poorly maintained are many of the smaller streets of this area. Most haven't seen anything in the way of investment or even routine maintenance since the 1980s. Old style lamps rust and decay, broken pavements, poor street surfaces with many cobbles missing, poles and bollards aplenty. Its shockingly bad really. How come the City Council just continue to ignore whole swathes of the city centre.

As one walks down towards the Market area, little changes. The newly refurbished park at Chancery Place is very smart but so much of the area is decrepit. HARP is but a distance memory around here.
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Re: Smithfield, Dublin

Postby Smithfield Resi » Wed Oct 06, 2010 11:57 pm

would be completed in December 2010


I understand they got an extension. Although the cobble relaying seems to be taking forever...should have got some central europeans in with some sand to lay a flexible base rather than all this fussing about with mortar bases.
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Re: Smithfield, Dublin

Postby jinx9000 » Tue Oct 19, 2010 5:19 pm

The residents got an update from their local councillors about this. it's now being carried out in 2 parts, first to be completed by end of 2010/start 2011 and then second part to start in mid 2011.

i'm holding judgement till it's completed..total coin toss with the council as to how things will pan out!

smithfield represents dublins first move towards what berlin currently offers its artists and students.........good things will come from the recession, will just take time!
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Re: Smithfield, Dublin

Postby Smithfield Resi » Wed Oct 20, 2010 10:37 am

jinx9000 wrote:smithfield represents dublins first move towards what berlin currently offers its artists and students.........good things will come from the recession, will just take time!


I think that is more by luck than judgement...
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Re: Smithfield, Dublin

Postby jinx9000 » Fri Oct 22, 2010 4:48 pm

Smithfield Resi wrote:I think that is more by luck than judgement...


I would take luck any day of the week over some CC attempt to artisanship an area!
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Re: Smithfield, Dublin

Postby Smithfield Resi » Sun Feb 06, 2011 12:15 am

There would seem to be some confusion at Smithfield about Parking...

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..and yet we seem to have two new spaces...

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The odd thing is that these are not accessible by car...yet they seen to require a pole...

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Finished to DCC's exacting requirements when installed on an historic (protected some might say) cobbled sett. Local artistic types have added to the dynamic appeal of these bare poles in the centre of "Dublin's Civic Space"

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Its brother also has a similar high quality of finish:

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Other examples are close by;

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Re: Smithfield, Dublin

Postby Smithfield Resi » Sun Feb 06, 2011 12:35 am

A nice grouping here - 3 within a 4 foot circle
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They nicely complement the "credit where it is due" moterway sized signage for the project
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Nice reminder at the base of those who are working long hours to bring asphalt to the square..
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Lots of it around...

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The improvements are amazing....

Just in case you don't know where to put the money at a 12 car parking zone
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or where we put that pesky motortax office..

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...it's over here
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And finally Smithfield now has a gun emplacement (to shoot at horses??)

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Is there no-one watching how in excess of €2m in grant money is being spend in this shoddy fashion??
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Re: Smithfield, Dublin

Postby OisinT » Sun Feb 06, 2011 2:27 am

Great posts... I don't know whether to laugh or cry at this disaster in Smithfield!
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Re: Smithfield, Dublin

Postby StephenC » Sun Feb 06, 2011 2:00 pm

You are not being entirely fair Smithfield Resi. The car space you highlight is the old parking area which is to be replaced by a new landscaped area. The empty poles probably relate to those and are likely to be removed once works on this section commence. The tarmac lump are a result of the removal of light stands and I imagine they too will be repaired with cobbles. The work is undoubtedly shoddy looking at present but it is a work in process. Signage is a mess all over the city: I see a new post for the interminably delayed wayfinder scheme, perhaps that will negate the need for these other fingerposts. I don't know what the "bunker" is for....all will be revealed by summer.

The notice about parking isn't really conflicting....at the end of the day its saying that you cant park on the square and that if you do you will be clamped. No doubt some residents don't see the square as the big civic space that it is meant to be. And sometimes our council don't either.

The main part of the southern section of the square has been cleared of trees and cobbles ready for relaying. A notice says that works will be completed by end of summer 2011.
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Re: Smithfield, Dublin

Postby Smithfield Resi » Sun Feb 06, 2011 2:33 pm

You are not being entirely fair Smithfield Resi. The car space you highlight is the old parking area which is to be replaced by a new landscaped area. The empty poles probably relate to those and are likely to be removed once works on this section commence.


Fair point on the car park space (I was having a bit of a dig) but the poles have been recently added - (a quick browse of Google maps confirms) and from what I can tell from the plans it is intended that the area below where the poles are located is where the landscaping will be - so I'm guessing they are staying (and there is no excuse for the concreting in of cobble setts)

I fail entirely to understand why the green is needed here. CPO of the Irish Distiller surface car park (dig them out an underground car park and create a peoples park next to the Luas would be my approach)

The tarmac lump are a result of the removal of light stands and I imagine they too will be repaired with cobbles.


I would hope so too, but DCC don't have a good record on repair and reinstatement.

The work is undoubtedly shoddy looking at present but it is a work in process.


In process indeed, it just seems some of the work is 'finished' - look at the amount of redundancy in the amount of poles installed for the parking space. Roads and Traffic must have shares in the galvanised pole industry.

Signage is a mess all over the city: I see a new post for the interminably delayed wayfinder scheme, perhaps that will negate the need for these other fingerposts. I don't know what the "bunker" is for....all will be revealed by summer.


The problem as I see it is that the solutions being offered for poor signage are to erect yet more...(is it really that hard to find a parking machine (why not some discreet brass arrows into the kerbing pointing to the nearest machine??)

The notice about parking isn't really conflicting....at the end of the day its saying that you cant park on the square and that if you do you will be clamped. No doubt some residents don't see the square as the big civic space that it is meant to be. And sometimes our council don't either.


I never really got as satisfactory answer from the City architects as to why surface parking was needed at all..there's a 1000 space car park 75m away from here under Smithfield Market. I also asked why, as 3 phase power was being put in, could these space not be reserved for electric vehicle charging (great spot next to the luas and dublinbikes stand. Whilst it was agreed that this was a great idea, the consulatation process was merely a sap to give an air of consulatation. I fear the play area will be a disaster, and take no account for what urban dwellers actually want and need from this space.

The main part of the southern section of the square has been cleared of trees and cobbles ready for relaying. A notice says that works will be completed by end of summer 2011.


They were meant to have the whole lot completed by end of Dec 2010, so had to go crying back to the EU. I have never seen cobble work proceed so slowly as they dragged out the relaying of the cobbles at the top of the square. If the rest of this work proceeds at that pace, it will be Dec 2011 before this is completed. I'm also concerned that they will take the opportunity to demolish the red brick former market police station (ESB substation) at the bottom of the square.

This square is rapidly losing any cohesive sense of a civic public space...
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Re: Smithfield, Dublin

Postby StephenC » Sun Feb 06, 2011 3:08 pm

I cant disagree with anything you say here Smithfield Resi! Its all a load of old cobblers - if you pardon the pun.

Re poles: If I am not mistaken DCC Planners put a condition on the works specifying a restrained approach to poles and signage. I must dig that out.
Lighting: Another small but annoying point- the lightstand installed at the pedestrian crossing on N King Street is different again from anything else on the street. One of the usual galvanised steel industrial park efforts so beloved of DCC Lighting. Why? Why not use the same repros as found further down the street. Why not use the opportunity to install a consistent lighting scheme all the way up N. King Street to Church Street? I dont get it. Why doesnt anyone see these small but inportant points.

Meanwhile, back to the bigger picture - the restaurant beside the Lighthouse closes...the area is littered with empty units...."development sites" lie undeveloped and falling into ruin and dereliction..... and no one really wants to go to Smithfield. Why would they? What for? I fear for the future of the Lighthouse (it looks like such an architectural white elephant now). Yesterday was the first time I have been there when the auditorium I was in was full (and I make a point of supporting the place). Its usually got a handful of people there and is utterly devoid of atmosphere. The cafe is more like a surgery and all that empty space makes its feel even more lifeless.

Dublin city centre is falling apart in my view....and I dont know what to do about it. It seems I am not alone.
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