National Children's Hospital design

Re: National Children's Hospital design

Postby magwea » Sun Aug 21, 2011 12:21 am

Two more elevations. It really is the case that when your a certain size you can fuck context. And this thing is huge.

Image

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Re: National Children's Hospital design

Postby missarchi » Sun Aug 21, 2011 6:02 am

Almost looks a boat maybe the titanic? or a sub...
who is investing in this? or is that private?
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Re: National Children's Hospital design

Postby PVC King » Sun Aug 21, 2011 9:52 am

The plant room 16 commercial storeys or equivelent to 20 resdiential storeys up would be a great site for mobile phone transmitters; no doubt there would be great interest. :clap:

Who did those residents think they were buying 2 storey houses in Leo Street and renovating them and calling them home; many of them in negative equity for the next 15 years, lets finish their chances of ever getting their money back by placing the last but biggest monument to the we can do anything anywhere tiger in their back yard and obliterate their natural light, destroy their streetscape and show them that properties like theirs were always meant to be damp flats for recently qualified nurses from Ballydehob.

There are so many sites in Nama that could accomodate the floorspace requirement this scheme brings; some of these sites even have enough extra space for additional floorspace for the major pharmas to lease space for research and development operations that could be transformative for their sector and the country's leading role in that sector. Why would anyone possibly want to build a flagship project on the wrong site; so wrong that the head of oversight has publicly said so and even considered an edge city site; why was a NAMA site in the docklands not weighed up?
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Re: National Children's Hospital design

Postby gunter » Sun Aug 21, 2011 11:06 pm

They're using a post tsunami urban aesthetic reference, what's wrong with that?

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Re: National Children's Hospital design

Postby magwea » Sun Aug 21, 2011 11:57 pm

At least they're putting some critical thought into the design. And I guess they're continuing the fine tradition of the Mater with regards to architecture.
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Re: National Children's Hospital design

Postby PVC King » Mon Aug 22, 2011 7:22 am

How does this design respect the great tradition that you refer to?
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Re: National Children's Hospital design

Postby vkid » Mon Aug 22, 2011 9:41 am

that is a farily horrendous looking yoke..

yoke is about the right word for it imo.
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Re: National Children's Hospital design

Postby BTH » Mon Aug 22, 2011 5:17 pm

magwea wrote:At least they're putting some critical thought into the design. And I guess they're continuing the fine tradition of the Mater with regards to architecture.


Hopefully this is sarcasm... The elevations really tell the tale of what a shockingly misguided design this is.
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Re: National Children's Hospital design

Postby magwea » Mon Aug 22, 2011 5:25 pm

PVC King and BTH, I always thought the Mater infamous for demolishing half of Eccles Street and getting architecture students up in arms.

Unfortunately, you won't get the same reaction out of current crop of architecture students regarding this development, they're far to concerned with their grades to be worried about the city's architecture.
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Re: National Children's Hospital design

Postby Frank Taylor » Mon Aug 22, 2011 5:47 pm

I was very relieved when the decision was made to place this hospital in the city centre. The case against was summed up by Philip Lynch the former chair of the hospital development board who said on radio:
"the people who designed the M50, when that was agreed on, everything was going to happen outside of that"
He then went on to describe the city centre as a 'cul-de-sac'

I don't share Mr Lynch's vision of the future of cities.

All hospital consolidation debates are partly motivated by the concerns of senior medical staff who wish to avoid the disruption of moving house or enduring a longer commute. These people are well able to eloquently make their case outlining benefits for patients and wealthy enough to fund a campaign.

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So the design looks like a spaceship hovering next to Mountjoy Prison. All curvy and shocking and rising alien-like from behind the redbrick houses. But haven't we had this debate before?

Kind of like this:
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Everyone likes that spaceship, don't they? And a stadium is less important/vital than a national hospital.

This the reality of Dorset Street for decades as we all know it. It is awful and depressing and a spaceship is not going to make it look worse. Not for a second.

Image

As an aside, I think that the shell of the metro station may have to be built at the same time as the hospital as it goes underneath.
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Re: National Children's Hospital design

Postby PVC King » Mon Aug 22, 2011 7:18 pm

Frank

There are key differences between the Aviva and this.

1. The Aviva could by having one end taken down to a lower height protect all rights of light
2. The Aviva is far more remote from a Georgian Core
3. The Aviva site is far from elevated indeed flood risk was a live consideration.
4. The Aviva was plugged in to an actual live piece of transport infrastructure
5. There were no other sites capable of taking the Aviva at a city centre location; land values were at the time Aviva in Wonderland.

Your entire argument is predicated on a premise that because this is inside the canals/M50 that it is acceptable; that you have made this argument surprises and disapoints me; why could this not go into North Wall, maybe some good could after all come out of the Anglo Hulk that gets too much unwanted attention, no shortage of other land down there to link into or if not big enough the Merchants Gate site is certainly more than big enough to accomodate this.
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Re: National Children's Hospital design

Postby Frank Taylor » Mon Aug 22, 2011 7:55 pm

Here's a photo of the model to get a feel for the new building context with others and the footprint. It obviously doesn't really fit the space and it's about twice the height you'd expect.
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Anywhere in the city would suit me. The recommendations from their two international experts reports (one commissioned by Harney, the other by Reilly) were the same: that the children's hospital should be built next to a major teaching hospital. Presumably they considered Vincents and James. The IFSC has the o2 experience and the r2d2 centre - not a major teaching hospital. Reilly had opposed the siting of the hospital but couldn't ignore both reports.

Lansdowne Rd is Georgian last time I checked. Other buildings are Victorian. D4 is hardly 2nd tier Dublin. The concerns about the Aviva were overstated. The finished building is a net gain to the area and the compromise on lowering the Vavasour Square side was a mistake and an example of the few triumphing over the many.
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Re: National Children's Hospital design

Postby PVC King » Mon Aug 22, 2011 8:07 pm

see post below
Last edited by PVC King on Mon Aug 22, 2011 8:09 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: National Children's Hospital design

Postby PVC King » Mon Aug 22, 2011 8:07 pm

Anywhere in the city would suit me. The recommendations from their two international experts reports (one commissioned by Harney, the other by Reilly) were the same: that the children's hospital should be built next to a major teaching hospital. Presumably they considered Vincents and James. The IFSC has the o2 experience and the r2d2 centre - not a major teaching hospital. Reilly had opposed the siting of the hospital but couldn't ignore both reports.


North Docks are 15 mins walk from the back of TCD; and 10-15 minutes drive from either Vincents, Beamount and the Mater; Crumlin is a fair distance from St James' Hospital. There is as you will accept a real difference between adult medicine and paediatrics which is a family of specialties each in their own right. This is a two question equation, is the site the right one from a logistical viewpoint and can the site accomodate the quantum of floorspace required in compliance with the principles of sustainable development. In any event the Docklands as a location would be served by Luas and have an almost direct connection to the motorway network and port tunnel for Dublin Airport and patients/organs/bloods being transfered by plane; the Mater has a Metro that is 25-50 years away and how many traffic lights this side of Whitehall Church?

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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.

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

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All courtesy and copyright Graham Hickey



Landsdowne Road is a mix of late Victorian houses i.e. one of the last phases of the Pembroke Estate and mid 20th century commercial buildings of mixed to dubious quality. St Georges Church is a real gem and does not need to have whats left of its context destroyed. It is not credible to argue that this elevated site can accomodate this development in a sustainable manner. Build it 30 floors high in docklands but 16 storeys plus plant at this location is gross over development.
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Re: National Children's Hospital design

Postby Frank Taylor » Mon Aug 22, 2011 8:28 pm

It will add a sense of place. I used to live on Nelson street. I doubt my quality of life would have been disimproved by having a spaceship hospital at the end of the street vista.

Perhaps the building could be made smaller if they removed some of the 972 parking spaces they have planned.

Holles Stret has zero spaces for patients and so does the Rotunda. That seems to work.
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Re: National Children's Hospital design

Postby PVC King » Mon Aug 22, 2011 8:43 pm

Frank Taylor wrote:It will add a sense of place. I used to live on Nelson street. I doubt my quality of life would have been disimproved by having a spaceship hospital at the end of the street vista.


You could argue that any tall structure adds a sense of place; you cannot argue against this disrupting a number of important vistas that have a good sense of balance. The principle of gateway always involves tall slender structures; this is a mid rise whale which was only designed with the intention of cramming a pre-determined floorspace into an unsuitable site; you can't blame the architects for anything other than advising unrealistic expectations. The Shard or Alta Vetro it isn't.

Frank Taylor wrote:Perhaps the building could be made smaller if they removed some of the 972 parking spaces they have planned.


The income from parking will pay for the operation of all the public open and internal recreational space at the site; parking at this location would conservatively net €2m-€3m a year; it is also required from people travelling from unconnected towns such as say Ballinrobe or Blacklion; you would get lost trying to find this ill conceived proposal from the Ilac or Parnell Centre if it weren't so out of scale.

Frank Taylor wrote:Holles Stret has zero spaces for patients and so does the Rotunda. That seems to work.


Funding is tight and from doubts expressed as to the need for this quantum of floor space by some people one can only conclude a certain element of this hospital will be given over to private operations being carried out on non-national patients that do not have access to top quality procedures in their own domiciles. If that is the case it makes sense, this country has a strong position in healthcare and this could be a great way of subsidising the Irish healthcare system and providing top level employment.

One of the biggest failures of the Late Late Government was to send everyone in the audience to the UK to get procedures done instead of building excess capacity in Ireland. Be a world leader in this field and you win a lot of influential friends; just build the facility somewhere where future growth can be accomodated and does not obliterate the area it surrounds.....
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Re: National Children's Hospital design

Postby Frank Taylor » Tue Aug 23, 2011 10:08 am

In any case, the political war is over. Now the planning war and then the funding war. I disagree that the building will detract from the area.

Back to parking for a second: From talking to staff at the Mater, there is virtually no staff parking provided on site. Instead, the hospital rents a car park from Dalymount Park in Phibsborough. Staff pay a hefty fee for usage. Obviously this presents a large incentive to staff not to drive to work. There is some visitor parking on Eccles St but not much.

Anyhow, the new building containing a&e, theatres and wards is due to open early next year and comes with 440 underground spaces and 350 above ground. I don't know how these spaces are to be divided between staff and patients. The national childrens hospital comes with 972 spaces to be divided 3:1 in favour of visitors/staff.

I don't believe that making it easier for staff to drive to work will improve the area or prevent lardy matron syndrome.

That said, I can imagine that parking provision was a primary driver for staff acceptance of these redevelopments.
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Re: National Children's Hospital design

Postby PVC King » Tue Aug 23, 2011 6:31 pm

Frank Taylor wrote: In any case, the political war is over. Now the planning war and then the funding war. I disagree that the building will detract from the area.


I could post many examples of how that type of cladding degrades over time; however I will just leave you with the proposals clear destruction of St George's, an utterly sublime 18th century church that has been restored to the highest standards. On that image alone the scheme should be refused; if your view of the area is so low, why did you live there?

Image


Frank Taylor wrote:Back to parking for a second: From talking to staff at the Mater, there is virtually no staff parking provided on site. Instead, the hospital rents a car park from Dalymount Park in Phibsborough. Staff pay a hefty fee for usage. Obviously this presents a large incentive to staff not to drive to work. There is some visitor parking on Eccles St but not much.


As would terminating the arrangement at Dalymount and letting the market value the demand value of individual car-space offered to all and sundry.

Frank Taylor wrote:
Anyhow, the new building containing a&e, theatres and wards is due to open early next year and comes with 440 underground spaces and 350 above ground. I don't know how these spaces are to be divided between staff and patients. The national childrens hospital comes with 972 spaces to be divided 3:1 in favour of visitors/staff.


The new building comprising the Mater Hospital; the proposal to hijack the Maters future development potential as an adult hospital must also be considered; if you fill the site with childrens wards then the Mater can not expand their own campus over time. A very short sighted idea.

Frank Taylor wrote:I don't believe that making it easier for staff to drive to work will improve the area or prevent lardy matron syndrome.

That said, I can imagine that parking provision was a primary driver for staff acceptance of these redevelopments.


I don't disagree that it is likely that staff peace was bought with parking privilages; medical staff like all others must go to market to get parking unless the hospital is in area that is relatively remote. I believe moving this to the Docklands would see far more sustainable commuting patterns via Luas and or overground into Spencer Dock or the cycle network; a relocation down there would really encourage completion of S2S.
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Re: National Children's Hospital design

Postby GrahamH » Thu Aug 25, 2011 12:41 am

It is my understanding that the vast amount of car parking provision is a 'temporary' measure, designed to ease the transition to a public transport-oriented patient throughput, and to fill the accessibility void in advance Metro coming on stream (ahem). It is intended that a significant amount of parking - perhaps the uppermost deck of the basement - will be subsumed back into the hospital as ancillary space within the short to medium term. The remaining quantum is apparently in line with 'international norms' regarding consultant and doctor on call access to the hospital as well as other emergency staff and visitor car parking.

In all of this discussion, there is a key issue that will raise its head in the An Bord Pleanála assessment. That is the recent award winning Phibsborough/Mountjoy Local Area Plan (LAP), drafted for Dublin City Council primarily to plan for the strategic insertion of a National Children’s Hospital there, as well as the development of the Mountjoy Prison site. Its expressly stated provisions and outline plans for the hospital frankly appear to be half the floor area and overall size of what is now being proposed. It never fails to amaze how public planning policy, paid for by public money for the public good, even in this reflective climate, is still being bulldozed through, contorted, twisted and sculpted to the needs of a developing class, and that includes the State.

A few lines from the LAP that specifically accommodate and plan for the requirements of this national facility:

Tall buildings should be appropriate in terms of proportion, composition and their visual impact; they should be slender and have a minimum height to width ratio (slenderness ratio) of 3:1, and generally should not exceed [16 floors] or 50m in height.

What is proposed is a vast heaving behemoth of an ungainly groundscraper, with a lumpen ratio of goodness only knows, and a height well in excess of 70m on the heightest point in the city. Welcome to Irish planning.


An overriding consideration will be whether the height proposed has any negative impact on the established amenity of existing buildings, especially homes and protected structures within the plan area. Privacy, daylighting and shadow analysis will also be required.

The very habitable nature, never mind amenity, of large tracts of low-scale terraced housing is being impacted by this proposal. This would never in a million years even get past concept stage on the south side, never mind in any civilised city.


In summary, all tall landmark building proposals will be assessed in accordance with the Dublin City Development Plan and the policies of this LAP, having full regard to the impact on the amenity of existing occupiers and buildings, including privacy, overshadowing and conservation considerations. Any proposal must also demonstrate that there is a strong urban design rationale and identify the architectural and planning gains to be delivered by the height proposed.

How are any of the above being catered for? By contrast, the draft images in the LAP take cognisance of nearly all of the above, based around courtyards and slim blocks ranging from 5 to a maximum of 12 storeys.

This hospital proposal has got to the same stage that we hit late last year with the financial crisis, where the figures are so off the scale, the entire vista presented is so bonkers, and the future prospects so ghastly, that nobody actually sees it anymore. It’s so completely nuts that it might actually get through in the blind ignorance of it all. When something approaches such echelons of barminess, sure what does an extra quantum leap in floorspace, storeys or facilities matter relative to context? Sure we're all on the happy pills now!

There is little doubt in my mind that this is Convention Centre Dublin Round II, only this version has the clout to impart its ignorance on large tracts of the city. It is such a crude, ungainly, incoherent, compromised and flawed building, both its design and its relationship with its setting, that it in no way whatever deserves to be a major civic building, and less still that public funds be directed towards such a damaging project for the city of Dublin.

Yet again our beleaguered city gets dumped on with a major mediocre building to serve a national interest, that neither respects, compliments or embellishes Dublin’s architectural repertoire, its urban structure, or its civic pride as a capital city. In the eyes of national government, it is a facility that is to be shovelled in at all costs, as has so sadly been the case over the past half century – a city to be carved up and dumped upon as required.

Without question, the National Children’s Hospital should be located in Dublin city, and without hesitation it should be a building of architectural excellence, distinction and potential landmark status. But the simple reality is that this site is not capable of accommodating the needs of this hospital without coming to a ghastly compromise - as the current proposal demonstrates.
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Re: National Children's Hospital design

Postby missarchi » Thu Aug 25, 2011 5:13 am

2 second 2 cents...

The only way I can see around it is phasing the demo of the new works/old hospital. and ringfencing the site close to the boundary with a new structure that steps back.
The old hopital takes up quite a chunck...
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Re: National Children's Hospital design

Postby Frank Taylor » Thu Aug 25, 2011 11:28 am

GrahamH wrote:It is my understanding that the vast amount of car parking provision is a 'temporary' measure, designed to ease the transition to a public transport-oriented patient throughput, and to fill the accessibility void in advance Metro coming on stream (ahem). It is intended that a significant amount of parking - perhaps the uppermost deck of the basement - will be subsumed back into the hospital as ancillary space within the short to medium term. The remaining quantum is apparently in line with 'international norms' regarding consultant and doctor on call access to the hospital as well as other emergency staff and visitor car parking.
It's very hard to convert multi-storey car parks to other uses. We all know the problem with 'temporary' arrangements (temporary signs on O'Connell Street, temporary car park on Leinster Lawn)

Does a LAP have any legal status or is it just a 'have regard' type of thing?

One the one hand, LA planners around the country are arguing with people over cm difference in domestic extensions and whether their bungalow windows match the shape of their out of sight neighbour, meanwhile ABP grants permission for an illegal casino in 2 mile borris with a plastic white house replica. The words arbitrary and random and inconsistent and irrational and unfair spring to mind. So I agree with you that anything is possible now.

I had the misfortune to bring an old relative in to the Mater A&E a few years ago. It was like being transported to Kinshasa. When I thought things couldn't get any worse, a prisoner was carried in handcuffed to a stretcher to cheers from his zombie mates awaiting treatment for injuries recieved while skagged out of it. Looking around the streetscape of NCR with the prison on one side and the concrete a&e barracks on the other is to look at the lowest urban form. The area is of interest as a perfect reproduction of a Dickensian nightmare (with cars).

Leo Street is going to be ludicrously overlooked and everyone should be adequately compensated. Although I notice that nearly every house in the terrace has filled their rear yard with a kitchen extension.

Beautiful St George's Church is surrounded by schlock on all sides. There's a lego office block, a spar and then the council flat crescent that replaced the georgian crescent at Hardwicke Place. The Mater private is industrial quality nothingness.

re slenderness
it's going to look slender from the sides!
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Re: National Children's Hospital design

Postby thebig C » Thu Aug 25, 2011 1:41 pm

I agree with alot of the sentiments expressed here, moreso after viewing the renders.

It has probably already been touched on but even with its 16 stories, the impression is overwhelmingly horizontal. That in itself leads to much of the loomimg aspect of the building. Therefore, taking into account what has been stated above, I would have to wonder if it was actually taller would its impact ,conversely, be reduced?! Afterall taller buildings tend to give the impression of soaring rather then brooding over the parapets of their neighbours. In fact, when this was first mooted, I heard references to it being over 20 floors.

As regards the location. It is hard to see it changing now that two reports have reccommended the Mater site. Reilly had pinned his hopes on the second report voting for a different location. If he changes to site in the aftermath of that he will be open to all sorts of accusations. Looking at James's or Vincents.....in spite of its Luas and rail connectivity the streets around James are argueably worse then the NCR area and much of its property is taken up with random 1-2 storey "structures" so redolent of Irish hospitals. Likewise Vincents now has comparitively little space since the new extention was built (to replace the 13 storey nurses home).

C
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Re: National Children's Hospital design

Postby shadow » Thu Aug 25, 2011 4:06 pm

Perhaps this is a ruse to free up all the old hospital sites for commercial development. Cynical, me, no.....
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Re: National Children's Hospital design

Postby Frank Taylor » Thu Aug 25, 2011 7:43 pm

They'd have to make it about 500m high to get a 3:1 slenderness ratio. 128 floors?
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Re: National Children's Hospital design

Postby teak » Thu Feb 23, 2012 2:33 pm

What a load of rubbish.

They just haven't got the dough for even a small children's hospital, in town or out the suburbs.
And won't have it either for some time to come from what I extract from Dr Reilly's weakly promising tone.
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