Dublin Historic Stone Paving disbelief

Re: Dublin Historic Stone Paving disbelief

Postby GrahamH » Wed Jul 04, 2007 1:41 am

3/7/2007

Well, like clockwork, poor old Parks and Planters have been called out to save the day yet again in the case of the City Hall Plaza – only even their usual sensitive works aren’t safe from the blight of meagre resources. We now have bloated leafy wedding cakes fashioned from recycled 1980's McDonald’s chairs dumped about the space in an attempt to enliven this sterile ‘civic amenity’.

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The finesse and consideration for the historic setting is striking.

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They're utterly awful. Whereas I'd welcome any softening of the space, these just hammer home the point of how this area has been appalling designed from the outset. Can you just imagine a similar, supposedly tailor-made, architect-designed space in any other European city being scattered with frumpy floral planters? It's akin to labouring over designs for a Meisian-inspired house and then putting up net curtains. And even the type of planter chosen here speaks volumes: I've seen better local authority models in regional towns! Not even half-decent timber or stone models used.

Meanwhile on the historic granite paving fronting the plaza, further incisions have been made in the stone to accommodate more of these ghasty yokes generously termed litter bins.

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So not only are they hideous in their own right and in the historic setting, they also damage the paving on which they’re sited, are located in the wrong place for users of the plaza seating to avail of, and are plonked right in the way of pedestrians on this often crowded pavement! And why three in a row - in case you don't see the first two?!

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What a mess: even after all the controversy over Robocop and the sterile square they still can’t get it right. And the place isn’t even finished yet either – the railings are still there shielding the sticks that were planted ages ago.

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Just as an aisde, as some consolation, there's been a lovely job done with the planters on the Boardwalk. They've all been stained a more elegant dark shade, and have attractive architectural ferns with floral displays planted in them.

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A faintly exotic, Victorian whiff has been added to the Boardwalk. Nice job Parks Dept.
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Re: Dublin Historic Stone Paving disbelief

Postby ctesiphon » Wed Jul 04, 2007 9:04 am

Mmmm. Lovely. And the sensitivity with which the square holes for the trees were created is deserving of the highest praise too.

I'm thinking of mounting an assault on the DCC toolshed to steal all the circular saws- who's with me?
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Re: Dublin Historic Stone Paving disbelief

Postby Peter Fitz » Wed Jul 04, 2007 4:06 pm

Did anyone see the plans for the plaza prior to construction ? I find it hard to believe that what we have now could have amounted to any kind of coherent landscape design for a major public space on paper;

bland granite paving (poorly laid in some odd random pattern)
raised granite seating (some merit in themselves but for fuck sake, more granite)
4 carpinus trees (these twigs have to be an after thought, they wouldn't cost more than 50 Euro each)

and thats it ?

I imagine DCC abandoned ship on whatever was proposed for the plaza once the botched new landmark emerged from the scaffold ... the plaza, in fact the whole feckin project, really is dreadful.
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Re: Dublin Historic Stone Paving disbelief

Postby manifesta » Wed Jul 04, 2007 5:59 pm

I was walking up Dame Street when I happened upon this allegory.

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Re: Dublin Historic Stone Paving disbelief

Postby ctesiphon » Wed Jul 04, 2007 6:50 pm

Boo hoo.

Oh, wait...

*** *** ***

I noticed on Dame Street today that there must have been one of those cascading planters left over from their insertion in the 'plaza' as one has landed at the top of Cow's Lane. Or maybe it was making a break for freedom...?
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Re: Dublin Historic Stone Paving disbelief

Postby constat » Thu Jul 05, 2007 11:50 am

ctesiphon wrote:Mmmm. Lovely. And the sensitivity with which the square holes for the trees were created is deserving of the highest praise too.

I'm thinking of mounting an assault on the DCC toolshed to steal all the circular saws- who's with me?


And what about the Lilliputian trees themselves !
DCC couldn’t have found any smaller if they tried; the trees will probably be fully grown in say…150 years :confused:
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Re: Dublin Historic Stone Paving disbelief

Postby Walker » Thu Jul 19, 2007 7:20 pm

GrahamH wrote:3/7/2007
What a mess: even after all the controversy over Robocop and the sterile square they still can’t get it right. And the place isn’t even finished yet either – the railings are still there shielding the sticks that were planted ages ago.

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Nice photos GrahamH - As if the new building wasn't bad enough, it's poor design is complimented with egually poor 'landscaping'.
The attempt at a tree lined avenue leading up to the rear entrance flight of steps flies in the face of aescetic values. A child with a decent range of lego pieces could make more of this space.
What's missing?
1. A decent bench with back support. I suppose the idea with the square blocks is that if enough people sit on them and all lean back at the same time they can use each other for support!
2. A focal point of interest - the central area here has been dedicated to spotted 'seats' and wedding cake planters. There could have been a central feature of interest around which the seats etc could have been arranged.
3. An ashtray stand for those who have the consideration to use them - there should be one there at least
4. Materials used should suggest a welcome atmosphere not cold bare industrial sanitised hardness on the eye.
5. An overall shape which dictates the placement of individual elements - the seats are in a square matrix pattern yet the planters are randomly placed out of sync making it look disorderly overall.

Also, the area between the seats and the wall to the right (incl. the tree lined avenue) space has been wasted here. More mature trees should have been introduced and dotted over the entire public area not kept to the back in a cluster

As for bins..........
The capacity of the new bin is quite small compared to the old large black type - One larger is better than 3 smaller, it's unecessary triple maintenance and further clutter of our fine hand crafted flagstoned streets. The damage done to the granite in introducing these grey daleks is irreversible and criminal.

Further, these flagstones should be worthy of protected structure status - which would in theory then require a planning application to carry out work on them. Then at least the public could participate in the decision making process!
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Re: Dublin Historic Stone Paving disbelief

Postby Devin » Thu Aug 16, 2007 11:49 pm

UPDATE

Devin wrote:Image


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I got a reply to my complaint about the water metering job that the matter was being investigated. Still, poor quality work continued ... For example, here is a Herbert Street water meter as originally shown (top picture), with the removed flag area temporarily 'blacktopped'. Then the finished mess (above) ...




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Why would you build a 3-inch thick ridge of cement in the pavement?.................. Why??!
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Re: Dublin Historic Stone Paving disbelief

Postby Peter Fitz » Fri Aug 17, 2007 12:34 am

ah sure who'll notice ... :rolleyes:

slightly off topic, but have a good look ... !

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well maybe not so off topic ... they've made shit of the place, while installing the shit bollards, never mind the shit paving.



now ye have it :D
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Re: Dublin Historic Stone Paving disbelief

Postby Sarsfield » Fri Aug 17, 2007 10:43 am

Peter FitzPatrick wrote:slightly off topic, but have a good look ... !


Nice piece of Photoshop ;)
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Re: Dublin Historic Stone Paving disbelief

Postby henno » Fri Aug 17, 2007 11:03 am

is that photoshopped????

if not they really live up to the sterotype of a council worker.... thanks for the laugh...
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Re: Dublin Historic Stone Paving disbelief

Postby alonso » Fri Aug 17, 2007 11:28 am

ah that went round a few weeks ago... either there was just enough room or the mini hiace is now "public art"
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Re: Dublin Historic Stone Paving disbelief

Postby StephenC » Fri Aug 17, 2007 11:56 am

Where is that Peter
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Re: Dublin Historic Stone Paving disbelief

Postby Rory W » Fri Aug 17, 2007 5:01 pm

it's in the UK - note the British Rail logo on the sign

Also they could be the locing bollards which can be lifted - sorry to ruin the gag

Agree about the shit paving job though
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Re: Dublin Historic Stone Paving disbelief

Postby Morlan » Fri Aug 17, 2007 6:29 pm

Peter FitzPatrick wrote:ah sure who'll notice ... :rolleyes:

slightly off topic, but have a good look ... !

[IMG]http://www.webeireann.com/archiseek/bollards_ifsc.jpg[/IG]

well maybe not so off topic ... they've made shit of the place, while installing the shit bollards, never mind the shit paving.



now ye have it :D



That's a photoshop job. :)
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Re: Dublin Historic Stone Paving disbelief

Postby Peter Fitz » Fri Aug 17, 2007 7:10 pm

The forward i got said it was from the ifsc, not a chance, definitely uk somewhere ...

very observant picking out the Brittish Rail logo on the sign Rory :;)

If Morlan says its a photoshop job, thats good enough for me !!
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Re: Dublin Historic Stone Paving disbelief

Postby GrahamH » Fri Aug 17, 2007 10:17 pm

Am I the only one who doesn't get this? :o
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Re: Dublin Historic Stone Paving disbelief

Postby Morlan » Fri Aug 17, 2007 10:42 pm

GrahamH wrote:Am I the only one who doesn't get this? :o


That van isn't a permanent feature, Graham!

It's been going around a lot of UK forums titled "Irish builders". A fitting title considering Devin's investigations.
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Re: Dublin Historic Stone Paving disbelief

Postby GrahamH » Fri Aug 17, 2007 11:00 pm

I still don't geddit.

Is the sand supposed to have fallen out of the van or what?

(lol)
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Re: Dublin Historic Stone Paving disbelief

Postby Morlan » Fri Aug 17, 2007 11:17 pm

GrahamH wrote:I still don't geddit.

Is the sand supposed to have fallen out of the van or what?

(lol)


:D No Graham, the sand didn't fall out of the van.

How will they get the van out when they're done?
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Re: Dublin Historic Stone Paving disbelief

Postby GrahamH » Fri Aug 17, 2007 11:30 pm

ahhhhhhhhh.....
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Re: Dublin Historic Stone Paving disbelief

Postby Devin » Sun Sep 16, 2007 11:04 pm

The sloppy concrete and tarmac road & paving surfaces in Temple Bar West End are finally being taken up and permanent surfacing put down, SEVEN years after the area was developed – hooray! (pics below)

They’ve got a nice honey-coloured granite for the paving, which is good, and it’s being laid to a good standard. However I’m disappointed to see that it’s ‘business as usual’ with the street surface: cobbles (or setts) laid one inch apart then tar poured between – the same terrible surface as the rest of Temple Bar.

The re-cobbling of Temple Bar is a failed project. The cobbles are uncomfortable to walk on and impossible to cycle on. Would it not have been better Dublin City Council to use, for example, a cobble imprint similar to what’s used on Luas? As cars are gradually closed out of the city more streets are going to need to be cycle friendly. This is what’s happening in Bordeaux and many other cities.

Why is this abominable 1988 surface being foisted on Temple Bar West End?
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Re: Dublin Historic Stone Paving disbelief

Postby GrahamH » Mon Jun 02, 2008 11:21 pm

3/6/2008

Is this the latest 'random' artistic installation for the city centre?

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Or is DCC trying to make a tongue-in-cheek statement adjacent to the most frequented tourist attraction in the city?

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The mind boggles...
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Re: Dublin Historic Stone Paving disbelief

Postby ctesiphon » Tue Jun 03, 2008 9:43 am

A dry run for the Olympics? Photo pedestals for the tourists? I don't get it.

Also, I can't believe they're still pushing those g-dawful setts.
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Re: Dublin Historic Stone Paving disbelief

Postby GrahamH » Tue Jun 03, 2008 11:35 am

Nit-picky perhaps, but I was just passing watching the tourists scrambling about vieing for space with passing hoards of pedestrians, and observed firstly how utterly ridiculous these yokes look, secondly how ugly they are, thirdly how insensitively positioned they are in a tourist hotspot, and fourthly the obstacle they presented right in the middle of the busiest footpath in the city. Just no thought.

Going back to the title of the thread, having recently heard a speech (though more of a passionate rant) on Irish limestone from one of the two producers left in Kilkenny, the extraordinary fact emerged that at least 50% of their output goes straight onto boats to the Netherlands. They cannot get enough of Irish limestone, and are willing to pay for it in spite of their own native resource - albeit somewhat inferior. Irish limestone is proving particularly popular for sea defences, but also for paving and quite highly engineered interlocking municipal paving systems that are expensive to produce. They spend significant sums on paving in the Netherlands, deeming it to be an improving, cost-eflective, long term investment.

And yet we don't even use the stuff here! Indeed in Kilkenny there's a row brewing over proposals to use Chinese granite from the other side of the world to repave the city centre, rather than native limestone from the outskirts of the town. It was noted that too often municpal authorities in Ireland just see figures on a sheet and the bottom line, and nothing of the wider costs - social, economic and environmental - of trucking the alternative half way across the planet from potentially dubious sources. Once these factors are considered, our own little narrow world of penny-pinching dissolves into insignificance.

Apparently there's also a reluctance to use limestone for paving: it often being deemed to be too slippery and not abrasive enough, whereas it is generally more than adequate in its natural state and especially so if a machine-punched finished is given.

It'd be great to see more native limestone paving the capital's streets. You see the odd freak blue limestone kerb that stands out beautifully even against concrete, but that's about the height of it. We really need to take both the longer term and wider view on this issue.
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