I also dont understand all the jibes about getting 'urban designers' involved? Gali's office is one of the most inventive and reputable urban design offices in the world and has won many jobs internationally after the enormous success of their urban planning projects in Barcelona. In fact the office has only ever done about 2 or 3 buildings, the rest is all public space!
I also think the lights look great and the only problem I have with them is that maybe there is too much of the concented lighting elements. Gali's idea behind these lights (which she has used successfully in many other projects) is that the urban space is an outdoor theatre or film set and these concentrated elements are spotlighting for the show, Thanks Shakespeare. This is used to stunning effect on the beach in Barcelona, from the marina leading up to the two Olympic village towers, (near Gehreys little splayed house sculpture). Here, the situation of being on the edge of the city isolated in spots of blinding illumination makes one feel incredibly aware ones self in the city and of the enormous expanse of ocean beyond.
However I dont think this will work as well in Cork as there is so many spotlights and diffused elements that there is no longer any element of contrasting darkness in the street which is a vital part of the idea.
I also think the paving has worked out beautifully. There is a range of about 7 different types of stone from local (Kerry red limestone) to more affordable Spanish stone. It's refreshing to sea that Gali hasn't used the granite blanket blitzkreg approach to repaving which has been used so brutally and insensitively in many other historic european cities. A good Irish example of this hegemony of ocularisation in urban planning is Henry street in Dublin which has the character of a morgue! And of course arriving 10 years after everyone else on the other side of that huge North sea realised this was not always a successful solution!
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it will create a few interesting new pedestrian spaces, which are already emerging as focal points along the street. the lamps are interesting and have grown on me over time. the paving, i think, works well too
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