National Children's Hospital design

Re: National Children's Hospital design

Postby rumpelstiltskin » Mon Oct 18, 2010 11:12 pm

johnglas wrote:Less traffic, fewer sirens. Has grammar and syntax been a victim of the recession as well?


That should be 'HAVE grammar and syntax been VICTIMS of the recession as well?'. Oh dear!
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Re: National Children's Hospital design

Postby SeamusOG » Mon Oct 18, 2010 11:29 pm

rumpelstiltskin wrote:That should be 'HAVE grammar and syntax been VICTIMS of the recession as well?'. Oh dear!


Children! Please!

This is not about the English language. It's about your hospital.
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Re: National Children's Hospital design

Postby johnglas » Tue Oct 19, 2010 8:03 pm

Seamus: Touche! (Accent omitted) Of course, it's not about language, but the fad for stream-of-consciousness, never mind what old rope you write down in whatever construct is just an insult to the reader. We all make mistakes (as I (not i) demonstated), but most people do make an effort, and clarity does help the argument.
I'm not sure it is about the hospital; it's an awful beast on tight site, but is an edge-city location the answer?

PS I can save myself by linking 'grammar and syntax' as one concept, but I'm just digging a hole...
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Re: National Children's Hospital design

Postby PVC King » Tue Oct 19, 2010 9:34 pm

rumpelstiltskin wrote:That should be 'HAVE grammar and syntax been VICTIMS of the recession as well?'. Oh dear!


The S was cut in the emergency budget due to this recession.

To get this discussion back on track; what do we actually know about this proposal other than it is to be 16 storey's high and 400-600m from Mountjoy Square?

I am very supportive of the use and if there is to be a stimulus concept then this is something that will leave a very tangiable benefit to the population and may create further growth in the life sciences area which is per capita the best industry in the World.

One must conclude that if the Chair of the development committee resigned prematurely based on the site being unsuitable and that if there are no details as to who designed it, when it will be lodged for planning and what John Gormley has to say re its fit with designation of Georgian Dublin as a World Heritage site that it is probably a non-runner that FF want for the spring election. This project was approved by Government in 2006 when funding was abundant, how did it take 4 years to get to a pre-planning application announcement.

The soldier has no clothes
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Re: National Children's Hospital design

Postby Aseek » Wed Oct 27, 2010 1:59 pm

Back to hospital discussion - I wonder if that mean rescue for Murray O'Laoire?

http://www.murrayolaoire.com/news_10/Childrens-Hospital-Ireland-10.html

Their first design was extremaly iddyllic:
Image

Pity they finished with dish on the pile of glass boxes...
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Re: National Children's Hospital design

Postby wearnicehats » Wed Oct 27, 2010 2:27 pm

[quote="Aseek"]Back to hospital discussion - I wonder if that mean rescue for Murray O'Laoire?
QUOTE]

If you refer to the IT article

http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/ireland/2010/1013/1224280972479.html

Clearly - No
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Re: National Children's Hospital design

Postby GrahamH » Mon Aug 15, 2011 1:29 am

15/8/2011

So now that the Liveline debate about the proposed city centre location of the new National Children’s Hospital versus the side of a motorway has temporarily subsided, has anybody actually seen what is proposed for the north inner city? Has anybody even cast a sideways glance at the jaw-dropping scale and design of the development? Has so much a word been spoken in public about this impending project outside of medical and parking requirements?

It is not so much baffling, as thoroughly frightening, the complete lack of public discourse and media coverage there has been about the unprecedented planning impact of one of the largest buildings ever constructed in Ireland being shoe-horned into an already dense urban site. A site, incidentally, that has strategic impact on a district that forms part of the State’s tentative list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites, never mind its principally residential environment.

The sheer size of this hospital is mind-blowing. It is nearly impossible to calculate the scale of its impact on the north inner city – a development so audacious, not even Patrick Gallagher in his maddest moments would have proposed it. A number of Georgian and Victorian residential streets will be transformed into scenes from Independence Day.

Image

If you saw this at the end of the street, you’d swerve the car back the way you came.


Charming Nelson Street, with little more than half the proposed building in view.

Image


A quaint little red brick road. Can you imagine this being proposed in Dublin 6? Haha – the very notion is hilarious. But on the northside, who gives a toss? None of the consultants involved in bringing this behemoth into being live within a five mile radius of it.

Image


Outside St. George’s Church, it can’t even fit in the frame.

Image


It is considerably dominant over O’Connell Street - a key chimneyed vista that confirms the scale and character of Dublin as a low-rise city.

Image


Eccles Street itself.

Image

Forgive my cynical eye, but the eight-storey block to the immediate left of the existing Mater Private red brick block is supposed to be twice the height of the four-storey block fronting Eccles Street, yet looks nothing like this. Mentally scale up the four-storey block to eight storeys and one gets a much truer sense of the scale of this development.

One can only take these photomontages with a large grain of salt. Firstly, as static images can never truly capture the scale of development when experienced on the ground in the here and now, and secondly as, at the very least selective views are taken, and perspective trickery involved in presenting vistas.

The only positive part of the design in my view is the handsome facade to Eccles Street, which will be granite if I recall.

Image


But truly, the numbers for this project are staggering – of a scale that a German planner I have heard mentioned has said would never get built on an equivalent site in Germany. The height, the floor areas, the patient throughput, the associated service infrastructure to make it all happen are all of an unprecedented scale.

It is important to state that this hospital should be built on an urban site – just not this one. Never in a million years would a speculative building of this design or scale get permission for here – not even for a low intensity office or residential use, never mind a buzzing hospital. It’s not even sheer height from a traditional roofline aesthetic perspective that matters, but rather the staggering scale relative to its receiving environment. It just wouldn’t happen anywhere else.

I also don’t like the ‘playful’, tongue in cheek design, chosen to be ‘reflective’ of the hospital’s function. The flippant spaceship design is entirely inappropriate for a major civic building, not least in an urban context where there is nothing even remotely comparable by way of scale or massing, thus demanding a much more responsible, contextual design aesthetic. It is the interior and outdoor spaces that count in a child’s world, not the dressing of an anonymous skyscraper in a big city.

The Convention Centre’s slab block hotel got thrown out of planning partly due to its intrusion on the Georgian mile on the southside. Will equivalent consideration be given to its northside colleague? Does anyone actually care?

Image


On must also ask about the need for a wider masterplan for the hospital, rather than dumping it, typically Irish style, detached and in isolation from its context. How is it proposed to integrate it into the surrounding streets? Is a proper medical district proposed? What about ancillary and complimentary services, and earmarked sites for long-term expansion and consolidation? What is the future for the historic houses in the area – their uses, their conservation and upping their dismal presentation to the streets? What of the public realm of Eccles Street? Will the new granite surfaces ‘fall off a cliff’ in the classic Dublin manner into untouched surfaces and street furniture on Nelson Street? Will traffic be largely eliminated, or maintained as a hostile ‘strategic artery’ to the North Circular Road? Where will staff live? Is there a masterplan for a new residential community in the area?

From what I have read of the development and seen in presentation form, there is a bucketload of unanswered, not to mention unanswerable, questions about this hospital - a development that is being shovelled through the planning system almost entirely on medical and political grounds, with scant regard for typical planning norms. It is amazing that medical consultants can be hired from all over the world to advise on a project of this kind, yet the elephant in the room of the local planning context is completely ignored! It's truly extraordinary. If ever there was a case of nobody batting for Dublin, this is it.

The development is currently before An Bord Pleanála, with public submissions permitted for the next four weeks until mid-September.

Plans can be viewed here.

http://www.newchildrenshospitalplanningapplication.ie/
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Re: National Children's Hospital design

Postby PVC King » Mon Aug 15, 2011 7:27 am

It is not an ugly design; it just doesn't fit onto the site and the site is simply too elevated for a number of key vistas, take the view from the Spire; roughly 1/3 of its bulk is visable, why has the bulk nt been shifted aroung the site to protect that vista?

Taking the view from St George's even shifting the bulk around it is going to have significant impacts; it is further noted that none of the suspended access equipment is displayed on the montages; are the windows going to be cleaned by abseilers?

The country needs a childrens hospital; why isn't one of the significant NAMA sites in the North Docklands being used; Liam Carroll might after all have left the country something of value in public infrastructure terms. This design would actually look good on a sea level flat brownland site, if they showed it in true detail.
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Re: National Children's Hospital design

Postby BTH » Mon Aug 15, 2011 9:43 am

Not ugly? Personally I think its utterly vile and will destroy the north inner city. A misguided and failed attempt at "iconic" architecture where simplicity, clarity and elegance should have been the primary goals - quite apart from the nightmarish functionality issues. I can't believe this is sailing through but as Graham says, its the northside so "who cares"?
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Re: National Children's Hospital design

Postby PVC King » Mon Aug 15, 2011 7:08 pm

There is a big difference between ugly and inappropriate; this proposal is clearly inappropriate to its context but in the right setting it is not ugly; it is a large scale urban hospital that is not dissimilar to a lot of office projects getting built in functional office markets.

This project was part of a wider agenda to make Metro North stack up by siting every available project along its catchment; now that Metro North has been shelved this project lacks the transport infrastructure to service the staffing levels. I suggest the project be moved to Upper Sherriff Street which is on a Luas Line and where Nama have extensive holdings and as Luas has a one interchange position with both major National Rail lines and the soon to be joined up Luas Green line.
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Re: National Children's Hospital design

Postby BTH » Mon Aug 15, 2011 7:59 pm

I know the difference. I think its both ugly AND inappropriate. The lower levels are reminiscent of stacked prefabs. The upper levels look like a tacky Vegas hotel. This would be revolting no matter the location.
Obviously much smaller but the Evelina hospital in London by Hopkins is a great example of a hospital building in an urban context, rational, practical and yet still with the element of joy and uplift for the children within.
Last edited by BTH on Mon Aug 15, 2011 8:11 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: National Children's Hospital design

Postby PVC King » Mon Aug 15, 2011 8:10 pm

The style of the lower level is very much back into fashion of late; there a real good late 1960's example of this style just off Rue de Rennes in Paris with superb detailing; this style is popping up all over the place in urban infill over the last couple of years, if the finishes are good it is one of the few designs that looks better out of the ground than in fantasy montage. The upper section is I concede a little gimmicky. The real point here is that this building is designed in a manner that has no respect for its context and simply seeks to cram as much floor space as is possible into a site that is severly constrained.

I don't agree with BTW that it is ugly but you do have to ask the question how can cliffs of corporate style glass in a predominently residential area be considered in any way appropriate? A project on this scale needs to go where the sites are; docklands; every piece of office development land taken out of the pipeline increases the value of the rest....
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Re: National Children's Hospital design

Postby gunter » Mon Aug 15, 2011 8:17 pm

The Hardwick Place, Mountjoy Street, Nelson Street and O'Connell Street images show a slick glazed finish on the curvy upper structure, the Eccles Street and Leo Street views show a multiple [storey-consealing] horizontal brise-soleil as the finish here, which is it?
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Re: National Children's Hospital design

Postby PVC King » Mon Aug 15, 2011 8:56 pm

Inappropriate and at times jumbled; taking the view up Eccles Street the four storey section with set back is not bad and with the stucco section at the end of the image this would not look out of place in Victoria. I do however share Graham's concerns that the image most certainly does not convey the bulk and massing of an 8 storey structure; let alone one that goes to mid teens next to a residential street.

You are right however that in trying to cram as much as is possible into the site it is completely inappropriate that it does use far more styles than are optimum.
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Re: National Children's Hospital design

Postby rumpelstiltskin » Mon Aug 15, 2011 10:05 pm

Yes it is a bit over the top - I think that's what's so good about it. I'm sorry to have to break this to you, but Dublin will never be a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Most of what is in and around that area is mediocre garbage. The fact that Dublin is a low-rise city is what makes it architecturally boring - at least in terms of modern architecture. We need a bit of contrast and ambition, and I think this is as interesting and out of the box as the Central Bank on Dame Street which ended up considerably elevating the whole area.
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Re: National Children's Hospital design

Postby gunter » Mon Aug 15, 2011 11:22 pm

I don't normally agree with rumpel, but in this case I think the architectural bravado is justified by the project being a new National Childrens Hospital . . . . . and why should that not be an urban landmark?

There's not much point in us banging the drum for urbanism and then demand that significant new buildings make no impact.

As distinct from the recently proposed shopping centre on the Carlton site, a new national institution of this importance should make an impact on the cityscape, it should be a landmark.

I agree with Graham and PVC that there are aspects of the design that do not looked resolved and the podium blocks are a pretty muddled montage of familiar fare, seemingly including a swatch of Dublin-Airport-1970, and I don't think the balance between the base and the curvy upper block is right, but apart from that and the indecision about the facade treatment, I'd be broadly in favour of the way the scheme is shaping up, and totally in favour of the location.
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Re: National Children's Hospital design

Postby PVC King » Tue Aug 16, 2011 7:03 am

gunter wrote:
There's not much point in us banging the drum for urbanism and then demand that significant new buildings make no impact.
No-one is saying for second that particular sites are not suited to making statements; buildings like the Guinness Storehouse have made a great contribution. However the location of the statement must be made from an appropriate site; this proposal can only be described as a heckler in the position of its attempted statement.


gunter wrote:As distinct from the recently proposed shopping centre on the Carlton site, a new national institution of this importance should make an impact on the cityscape, it should be a landmark.


No argument that it should be permitted to make a statement; however in the context of a significant development land surplus where the government has urban land coming out its eyeballs why would one select a site where at least 4 distinct styles are required to cram the quantum of required space into a site that is just too small.

gunter wrote:I agree with Graham and PVC that there are aspects of the design that do not looked resolved and the podium blocks are a pretty muddled montage of familiar fare, seemingly including a swatch of Dublin-Airport-1970, and I don't think the balance between the base and the curvy upper block is right, but apart from that and the indecision about the facade treatment, I'd be broadly in favour of the way the scheme is shaping up, and totally in favour of the location.


To come back to Rumple's comparison with Stephenson's Central Bank conceived in the early 1970's; firstly Stephensons design was based on a strong single style, it was based on a single fashion, it was slender (not as slender after its height reduction), involved a very low site coverage percentage, provided a lot of public open space.

This proposal in contrast has been selected purely on the basis that the land was there and despite Nama drowning in Liam Carrolls extensive holdings it seems to have been selected based on its proximity to the axed Metro North project.

Break this proposal back to first principles of planning, i.e. appropriate development of any site and you could not select a more inappropriate design for such a constrained site.
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Re: National Children's Hospital design

Postby PVC King » Tue Aug 16, 2011 7:07 am

PVC King wrote:
gunter wrote:
There's not much point in us banging the drum for urbanism and then demand that significant new buildings make no impact.
No-one is saying for second that particular sites are not suited to making statements; buildings like the Guinness Storehouse have made a great contribution. However the location of the statement must be made from an appropriate site; this proposal can only be described as a heckler in the position of its attempted statement.


gunter wrote:As distinct from the recently proposed shopping centre on the Carlton site, a new national institution of this importance should make an impact on the cityscape, it should be a landmark.


No argument that it should be permitted to make a statement; however in the context of a significant development land surplus where the government has urban land coming out its eyeballs why would one select a site where at least 4 distinct styles are required to cram the quantum of required space into a site that is just too small.

gunter wrote:I agree with Graham and PVC that there are aspects of the design that do not looked resolved and the podium blocks are a pretty muddled montage of familiar fare, seemingly including a swatch of Dublin-Airport-1970, and I don't think the balance between the base and the curvy upper block is right, but apart from that and the indecision about the facade treatment, I'd be broadly in favour of the way the scheme is shaping up, and totally in favour of the location.


To come back to Rumple's comparison with Stephenson's Central Bank conceived in the early 1970's; firstly Stephensons design was based on a strong single style, it was based on a single fashion, it was slender (not as slender after its height reduction), involved a very low site coverage percentage, provided a lot of public open space.

This proposal in contrast has been selected purely on the basis that the land was there and despite Nama drowning in Liam Carrolls extensive holdings it seems to have been selected based on its proximity to the axed Metro North project.

Break this proposal back to first principles of planning, i.e. appropriate development of any site and you could not select a more inappropriate design for such a constrained site.


[quote=Graham Hickey]
Charming Nelson Street, with little more than half the proposed building in view.

Image


A quaint little red brick road. Can you imagine this being proposed in Dublin 6? Haha – the very notion is hilarious. But on the northside, who gives a toss? None of the consultants involved in bringing this behemoth into being live within a five mile radius of it.

Image


Outside St. George’s Church, it can’t even fit in the frame.

Image

[/quote]

Gunther your comments on the above 3 images on planning grounds is awaited.
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Re: National Children's Hospital design

Postby gunter » Tue Aug 16, 2011 8:08 am

It's the muddled base that I find objectionable in the Nelson Street image rather than the upper structure, although I think the slick corporate glazing in this representation is not as successful as the Venetian-blind like brise-soliel in some of the other images. In fairness to them, Nelson Street needs a bit work anyway.

I'd like to see the Hardwick Street image from a little further back on Temple Street to gauge the hospital and the spire of George's together, but I think I'm going to like the juxtaposition and, from a planning point of view, this is urbasism, is it not? As with the Nelson Street image, I think the corporate slickness of the glazing would be less successful than something more distinctive.

On Leo Street, What is 'a quaint little road' doing in the city centre?
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Re: National Children's Hospital design

Postby PVC King » Tue Aug 16, 2011 8:28 am

Re-work Nelson Street!!!!

The only rework you could undertake would remove 25% of the floor space and thus not perform its function as a National Childrens Hospital; a project many regard as key to delivery of continued excellence in life sciences. This is just is the wrong site.

If it is this crammed day 1 where do future extensions go?

Where do the ancillary businesses and research institutes go?

Put the lot in the docklands and allow the further development of the countries biggest industry where the key players can participate fully in development of pioneering techniques that make children better.

As for Leo Street it is quaint and is a great example of the Victorians prioritising higher density development where the transport infrastructure existed to serve it....
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Re: National Children's Hospital design

Postby shadow » Tue Aug 16, 2011 12:24 pm

Just a simple question....

How many sick children are there in the country?

How many bed spaces would that require?

How big should the building be or rather how do you provide for sick children and if so is there a more effective way of providing that.

This looks like a solution looking for a problem. And of course if you provide it it will be used. The over medication of life and over reliance on more and more expensive diagnosis (a failure to make judgements) especially nuclear and computer based diagnosis has been writ large. We get exactly what we deserve and this is a concretisaiton of the ineffectual primary care system in the country.

Beware experts and their Trojan Horses.

Even though I think this is an ugly mother, with poor enviornmental design (especially everything above the 5th floor) it will break the overtly restrictive height limits in Dublin once and for all. Joining that other monster at Smithfield we will have a datum to work to.

Increasing density is an essential part of moving into the 21st century for Dublin but this monocultural edifice is not the way to go.
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Re: National Children's Hospital design

Postby StephenC » Tue Aug 16, 2011 3:10 pm

Wayhey! Build shit buildings just to make a point. Remind me not to hire you as an architect.
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Re: National Children's Hospital design

Postby shadow » Tue Aug 16, 2011 5:48 pm

I am not defending either, both are horrendous examples lacking in scale and character and more importantly do not contribute to an urban envrionment fit for people.
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Re: National Children's Hospital design

Postby PVC King » Tue Aug 16, 2011 7:19 pm

GrahamH wrote:Charming Nelson Street, with little more than half the proposed building in view.

Image


A quaint little red brick road. Can you imagine this being proposed in Dublin 6? Haha – the very notion is hilarious. But on the northside, who gives a toss? None of the consultants involved in bringing this behemoth into being live within a five mile radius of it.

Image


Outside St. George’s Church, it can’t even fit in the frame.

Image


Forgive my cynical eye, but the eight-storey block to the immediate left of the existing Mater Private red brick block is supposed to be twice the height of the four-storey block fronting Eccles Street, yet looks nothing like this. Mentally scale up the four-storey block to eight storeys and one gets a much truer sense of the scale of this development.
Image
One can only take these photomontages with a large grain of salt. Firstly, as static images can never truly capture the scale of development when experienced on the ground in the here and now, and secondly as, at the very least selective views are taken, and perspective trickery involved in presenting vistas.

This cannot be repeated often enough.......................
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Re: National Children's Hospital design

Postby magwea » Sat Aug 20, 2011 11:30 pm

Image

It sure is a behemoth.
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