DDDA / Docklands Miscellany

Re: DDDA / Docklands Miscellany

Postby garethace » Sat Dec 13, 2008 10:45 pm

Some more competition from around the globe, One East Island in Hong Kong.
I don't think the Docklands area will ever get this tight! ! !

http://www.flickr.com/photos/cnmark/3088532195/sizes/o/

There are about 70 on. floors there, and they look pretty large too.
The buildings around the commerical one seem to be standard fare East Asian residential.
The same kind that Oscar Newman explored so well in the book Defensible Space, 1972, and marked a real set back to Jane Jacobs desire for higher densities.

You can really see how dark it does get at the street levels. Hong Kong Dept Architecture published this paper:

http://www.sbse.org/awards/docs/2004/Cheng317P.pdf

Brian O' Hanlon
garethace
 
Posts: 1579
Joined: Wed May 14, 2003 9:01 pm
Location: Dublin, Ireland

Re: DDDA / Docklands Miscellany

Postby garethace » Sat Dec 13, 2008 10:51 pm

A context shot of the same commercial tower.

B.
Attachments
IMG_4089.jpg
IMG_4089.jpg (93.65 KiB) Viewed 3946 times
garethace
 
Posts: 1579
Joined: Wed May 14, 2003 9:01 pm
Location: Dublin, Ireland

Re: DDDA / Docklands Miscellany

Postby gunter » Sun Dec 14, 2008 12:54 am

Regarding Dublin Docklands, I'm not sure whether there's much we should take from Hong kong, or Shanghai, or Dubai, in terms of developing patterns for future urban development. I'm not saying that we couldn't learn from many aspects of these cities, but, to me, there's a generic sameness to the architecture and urban form that is the opposite of what we should be aiming at.

A contrasting comparison, and one a bit closer to home, might be the inner basin area of Hamburg. Dispite the fact that the 'Binnenalster' is maybe seven or eight times the width of the Liffey, none of the water front buildings rise much above eight storeys. Both in the case of post war re-builds and more contemporary in-fills, restrained order is prefered to competing 'wow factor' buildings for these cityscapes in recognition that they present one the primary edges of the city, allowing a more traditional skyline of restored spires and relatively few corporate towers to provide the depth, the visual impact and the urban orientation points.

Image
This is the only photograph I have to hand

I'll try and dig out some pictures looking the other way which might illustrate this point a little better.
gunter
Old Master
 
Posts: 1905
Joined: Wed Jan 16, 2008 10:33 pm
Location: Dublin

Re: DDDA / Docklands Miscellany

Postby garethace » Sun Dec 14, 2008 1:31 am

Glad you made that excellent point again Gunter. Your posts are making me think a lot deeper into the whole issue than I otherwise would have. I like to take on board the Beijing, Hong Kong and Dubai models to shock people into awareness of the grander global picture. While there is no requirement for us to copy any of those places in Ireland, we still need to consider how 'flat' the world has become economically, to borrow Tom Friedman's phrase. Where to a large extent the company is now joined up like a large network across the globe, via packet switching technology and abundant backbone fibre optic bandwidth. Also to underscore the fact that western civilisation as our parents experienced in the 20th century is now in decline. As the South Americas, South East Asian and hopefully Middle Eastern regions are in their ascendancy. I dug up an old Anthony Reddy essay the other day, where I recall he gave a short account of Dublin's 'golden era' at the end of the 18th century, before the Act of Union. Dublin of course, then experienced a slow decline as a major destination in global terms. Perhaps, Reddy suggest in that essay, Dublin could be turning a corner again? (Note the Celtic Tiger optimism, reflecting the essays date)

The key reference I have been pounding everybody with this past year, is that of Stewart Brand. You can find a great lecture of his online if you search, about Squatter Cities. 1 billion inhabitants of the globe live in these makeshift settlements. Pretty shocking stuff to me. But this mass migratation from the rural countryside, these new hyper growing cities seem to be emerging on a scale we haven't quite seen before. Stewart Brand points out that at current rates of growth, New York is really the only western city that will see exist on the top ten list of the world's biggest cities. The Arup engineer who worked on the CCTV building, in his lecture here in Dublin lately, commented that China hardly had any architectural profession at all. That is, the pace of development in these new regions, is far outstriping the capacity of architects to keep up. That is partly why I wanted to link to some of the Hong Kong university architecture department papers too, to see the kinds of design problems they are facing. To expand the design problem/solution space, or context, within which the Dublin Docklands currently sits.

Brian O' Hanlon
garethace
 
Posts: 1579
Joined: Wed May 14, 2003 9:01 pm
Location: Dublin, Ireland

Re: DDDA / Docklands Miscellany

Postby ctesiphon » Sun Dec 14, 2008 10:08 am

ctesiphon wrote:Also, if there is merit in having a general debate on the future of office development in the city, might I suggest a new thread? Much of what has been written is entirely unrelated to the DDDA.
.
User avatar
ctesiphon
Old Master
 
Posts: 1949
Joined: Fri Apr 01, 2005 3:39 pm
Location: Dublin

Re: DDDA / Docklands Miscellany

Postby garethace » Sun Dec 14, 2008 11:52 am

ctesiphon wrote:Also, if there is merit in having a general debate on the future of office development in the city, might I suggest a new thread? Much of what has been written is entirely unrelated to the DDDA.


Good idea. Why don't we split the thread then?
Starting with your post, which you reminded folk to tune into the RTE Primetime documentary?
Maybe you could edit the post to include this link to the web version of the program?

http://www.rte.ie/news/2008/1204/primetime.html

I suggest that we call the new thread 'North Wall Quay', in specific reference to RTE's documentary.
I take your point, that everything since that point was unrelated to the original function of the thread.

Brian O' Hanlon
garethace
 
Posts: 1579
Joined: Wed May 14, 2003 9:01 pm
Location: Dublin, Ireland

Re: DDDA / Docklands Miscellany

Postby garethace » Sun Dec 14, 2008 11:55 am

Some useful background about New Towns concept here in Ireland, in:

Programme 3: July 25th 2005
This programme looks at how planning decisions made in Ireland 30 years ago have influenced how we inhabit our cities now, at our tendency to hide our problems on the periphery and at some of the positive aspects of suburban living.

http://www.rte.ie/radio1/thestatewearein/1054026.html

Brendan Bartley, Dept. of Geography, NUI Maynooth, in particular goes back into the deeper history.

Brian O' Hanlon
garethace
 
Posts: 1579
Joined: Wed May 14, 2003 9:01 pm
Location: Dublin, Ireland

Re: DDDA / Docklands Miscellany

Postby garethace » Sun Dec 14, 2008 2:43 pm

spoil_sport wrote:Well Brian, I am extreemly gratefull that I have made my way through architecture school before you got your hands on it, I find the idea of studying economice apawling, and would think twice about doing architecture if that was the case.


The reason, I emphasise economics for architects, is precisely for that reaction you experienced. That of shock and horror. It is what Edward de Bono calls a provocation in his teachings. You will find quite a few decent snippets of De Bono talking, on You Tube.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UjSjZOjNIJg&feature=related

Basically, you introduce an idea or provocation from a field totally outside your own, to enable Lateral Thinking. One of the big draw backs in Plato, Aristotle and Socrates western thought system, is that every thought has to have a logic to it. A lot of my contributions here on the Archiseek forum, has been 'Red Hat' stuff, in terms of saying what I 'feel' about our public planning bodies. Other posters here have introduced more white, black etc hat thinking.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rVfx3j8QaM8&feature=related

A good example of a 'green hat' thinker is Liam Carroll, which means I guess, that DCC are always performing a black hat thinking. The green hat is a natural counter balance to the dominant black hat. The green hat puts the black hat, at a disadvantage.

One of the comments made in the 'State we are In' Radio One series, was that developers get a lot of their guidance from the real estate professions. The real estate professions, tend to use what happened in the past as a relevant guide, to projecting what might happen in the future. If that is the case, then where did the apartment building come from? We weren't building apartments for private consumption before the 1990s to any great extent. Liam Carroll imported the idea of building apartments into this country, at a time when the research would have told, there was no market for apartments in Ireland. Yet, they sold off the drawing board. It was the same with mobile phones, the personal computer and many other discontinuous innovations. Of course, the point underlined throughout the 'State We Are In' Radio program, is that apartment building was an economic innovation in Ireland, as opposed to being a social or urban design one. It came in linked to a whole array of complex financial instruments, which were deemed necessary as incentives. To encourage investment in a lot of derelict land available in our towns and cities during the 1990s. Basically, to encourage private money to move into those areas. To enable money that was in the economy but lying fairly stagnant, to flow around and start changing hands again. In 2008 we are back in that very same situation. Where the money flow has stalled completely again. Yet much of the derelict lands are built on. That little trick won't work a second time.

(Please take note in the coming years as the same ball game plays out again, in relation to renewable wind energy in Ireland. A whole feast of economic conditions and legalities will be drawn up in haste, to enable the roll out process of wind generated power)

So you see, architects are involved in financial services. They are in the job of working with economic incentives, with developers to arrive at some solution. I was reading Deyan Sedjic's book about London the other day, where he describes a whole series of hotel buildings beside Heathrow airport, which were a product of government grant aiding for no. of hotel rooms completed by a certain date during the 1960s. Completed by a certain date, being the key qualification, so you can imagine the constaints in which the design operated there. That is what I intended to convey, when I suggested architects be more aware of economics. It is a 'hat' worth wearing from time to time. (To borrow De Bono's phrase on Thinking Hats) As you journey around the globe and look at development elsewhere.

I want to make one other observation about the work of Edward de Bono. In relation to how we teach architects and planners. (Indeed, the department of education in Ireland recently brought in De Bono to suggest advice for our country's system of education. Currently under a lot of strain due to increased numbers) One of the dis-functionalities I experienced during my time in Architecture School, was a lack of a space in which students might come to terms with their own creativty. (I hate using that awful word, but lets plough on) How about a class on 'Creativity' itself? Becoming self conscious of what architects do. Imagine if students of architecture could spend a little time each week, and earn course credits to listen to a You Tube lecture by Edward de Bono? I know from spending a lot of time with architectural students what the reaction would be. Oh drag, its pub time. There is no time. The project is more important. I have to see a soap opera tonight. Blah, blah, blah. I saw on RTE Radio One's website a program about pre-school in Ireland, called 'Learning to Learn'. I mean, what about a lecture in Thinking about Thinking? So that architecture undergraduates in a group format, could confront their own thought processes?

(I can just picture the hand bag fights now)

Architectural students in their late teens and early twenties, experience a growing isolation due to the longeivity of their student life. I certainly experienced it. My friends from secondary school (who did engineering or commerce) moved on to find jobs. It appeared like I was dragging my heels. Constantly pale, worn out and seemingly incoherent. Not with it, at all. Underperforming. I got crap from my favourite aunties and uncles. As my first cousins qualified in their 3 year Bachelor of Arts courses, and went on to do an MA. Those 'graduate students' didn't want to be seen beside me any longer. That is, when I was only half way through my course! In other words, architects, at that vulnerable, youthful, formative stage, find themselves in conflict with society. Moving outside the herd they are familiar with. Which is quite a distressing experience, having spent so much time as part of the herd during secondary school. And perhaps even rose to become a leader in that herd. As a mere function of needing to achieve high points to get into architecture in the first place. To suddenly have that little piece of status and credibility erode away. To be monopolised by a 3 year BA with a car loan!

What De Bono says, is we operate in a judgemental western thinking environment. Rather than one conducive to constructive thinking and design. Judgemental thinking was necessary at the time of the Renaissance for the religious groups to form value judgements about the heretics, and it has stuck with us, right down to the present. (Heretic is an unofficial label used in society for the young architectural student) I don't think that teachers appreciate the psychology of what is going on in the young minds. Other disiplines get to study more maths, more reading and more science. It all increases their value on the job market. (If only in a short term way, as they learn the latest whiz bag computer languages or whatever, available to them in universities) Architectural students are asked to summon material from within themselves. (And I don't mean barfing outside the pub) This shift in direction, in the brain activity of the young person, isn't dealt with fundamentally at architecture school. In fact, instead of building character, it leaves architects fundamentally weakened. The effects of which, last throughout their career and perhaps in severe cases, well into retirement.

Brian O' Hanlon
garethace
 
Posts: 1579
Joined: Wed May 14, 2003 9:01 pm
Location: Dublin, Ireland

Re: DDDA / Docklands Miscellany

Postby johnglas » Sun Dec 14, 2008 10:56 pm

Basically, you introduce an idea or provocation from a field totally outside your own, to enable Lateral Thinking.


Brian, your posts are very interesting, but after the second paragraph I've normally lost the will to live. You're showing far too much of the tendency towards academy-speak, which may be wonderful in overawing a tutorial but somehow loses its flavour 'out there' in the real world. This notion of 'provocation' in order to induce thought is the equivalent of defending much bad contemporary art on the basis that it 'makes people talk about art' (but it's still bad art).
The problem with thinking laterally, particularly in relation to economics, is that it can produce precisely the voodoo economics that have landed us in the present mess. Architecture and design - in an urban context - must above all be 'grounded'; getting out and walking about will outdo any amount of theorising. By all means have a vision; but a 'theory'? I'm not so sure.
johnglas
Senior Member
 
Posts: 864
Joined: Fri Dec 14, 2007 12:43 am
Location: Glasgow, Scotland

Re: DDDA / Docklands Miscellany

Postby garethace » Sun Dec 14, 2008 11:51 pm

johnglas wrote:Brian, your posts are very interesting, but after the second paragraph I've normally lost the will to live. You're showing far too much of the tendency towards academy-speak, which may be wonderful in overawing a tutorial but somehow loses its flavour 'out there' in the real world. This notion of 'provocation' in order to induce thought is the equivalent of defending much bad contemporary art on the basis that it 'makes people talk about art' (but it's still bad art).
The problem with thinking laterally, particularly in relation to economics, is that it can produce precisely the voodoo economics that have landed us in the present mess. Architecture and design - in an urban context - must above all be 'grounded'; getting out and walking about will outdo any amount of theorising. By all means have a vision; but a 'theory'? I'm not so sure.


Johnglas,

I am delighted you asked me that question. Why do we need theory in the building industry? I have been waiting for someone to ask me that question for a long while. I have been preparing my answer for as long, as you can see by the length of my post below. If I can take you on a virtual tour, our first stop should be here: If you look at the David Wetzel lecture in multimedia section at http://www.feasta.org

Take your good time, listen to the hour long lecture and dwell on it. Even better if you own an iPod. Dave underscores the point about how little real information we have about land and property. If you are looking for possible causes of the current mess we have in, there is one very large culprit. We don’t really know the value of land. Nor furthermore, do we have any commitment within our government to find out what the value of land might be. It is one of the biggest Vodoos of all. Because during the boom years, everyone I know was speculating what Liam Carroll might be worth. What Sean Dunne might make. Or what Bono might do next. That leaves the property industry very, very vulnerable to speculative booms and busts.

I know a bit about this, because I used to work in the computer industry for Dell. They high tech industry is rife with the same kind of speculation. At the height of the dot.com era, a venture capitalist famously said, perhaps internets stocks are under valued! Within that context it is almost impossible to organise resources efficiently. (Think of the major architectural practices as an example) How are professions supposed to develop any competency in building construction and sustainability. If the plug keeps getting yanked? Just as designers and property developers begin to get their head around the problem, they are wiped out quicker than they started. It is very easy to do what Frank McDonald does, and quickly point fingers at developers. But if you study David Wetzel's lecture, you will see the problem is much deeper than that.

All this background information I hope serves to illustrate the high points and low points I have gone through in the course of my involvement with building professions. But nothing could have prepared me for the experience when I sat down one evening to watch Prime Time, and a building site, which myself and my fellow architects/engineers/project managers had spent 40-50 hour weeks, for many years, working to develop, was suddenly being levelled to the ground! I learned something that night about the country I live in. About the property industry in general. How far a distance our best public servants can manage to travel away from the ideals of integrity and fair play.

I flicked through a friend’s book today, by Robert J. Shiller called The Subprime Solution. A very poor book as economics books go in my opinion. (Couldn’t say that to my friend) But it did have significance to me for one reason. The author wrote a book about the stock market, Irrational Exuberance a few years ago. We have an abundance of information about stock markets around the globe, upon which to base research and study. Dating back a century or so. But when Shiller took on board a project to write about the Subprime mortgages in America, he discovered to his astonishment we have almost no information about land and property. If you take that point in the whole context of economic theory, and everything to do with markets ability to discount future profits, into current prices etc, you can see how strange the property world seemed to Shiller.

If you read books about construction contracts, and in particular about design build contracts, you will also learn that construction is a bastion of old fashioned proceedures in terms of contracting too. But that is a much longer discussion than I have time for here. I referenced to Don Topscott's book, Wikinomics, the chapter about the global plant floor. Which should allow people here to sink their teeth into that issue, if they wish.

I attended a conference in Dublin about tall buildings a couple of years ago. On the speaker panel that evening was Dick Gleeson, chief planner for Dublin city council. Also a valuer or surveyor from CBRE. Ken Shuttleworth, a founding partner at Foster architects. And a tall building structural engineer from Buro Happold. Anthony Reddy moderated discussion afterwards. The conclusion was that we need the state to give us better direction as to the future of tall buildings in Dublin. The problems inherent in that are pretty many, given what I have said above. It struck me as odd, because managers often base their strategy on information about the past. What information about the past could facilitate a manager to make a decision about a tall building in Ireland? Nothing. So you are back to theory, whether you like it or not.

It means, to take certain leaps into the future we do need to build robust models and theories to work with. This is why I mention De Bono so much. He seems like a person who is too theoretical, and architects should have to worry about his teachings. But in order to soften out the spikes of the boom and bust cycle, in relation to land, in relation to development, we will have to develop better models. Better theories. We all have to sit around the table together. How many developers sat at the table, in the discussion on RTE radio one, The State We Are In? Not one. It reminds me of a thing, the Maltese architect Richard England once said to me: When I go to a site, I look for present absences, and absent presences. He could be talking about developers, at round table discussions about development, held in Ireland!

By way of analogy, the renewable power generation companies (even state organisations such as Eirgrid in Ireland) are already talking about predictive techniques to do with the climate. So that future output of renewable energy (itself subject to terribly erratic spikes and troughs) could be predicted with great ease. To run a stable power grid on a national level at close to full capacity, you need stable predictable power. That is why 100% renewable energy generation is a non-runner in the Irish context. We will need non-renewable power generation to maintain a baseline supply of power. We are facing the same challenge in the world of construction economics I would humbly argue. I have studied Liam Carroll's organisation up close, and from the inside. And I would have to say he built a company, and structured it, to maintain stability. But even his company can't sustain the troughs like that of North Wall Quay. No company or bank, could be expected to operate that close to the wire.

At the heart of the problem in North Wall Quay are two developers, Liam Carroll and Sean Dunne. At the heart of both their frustrations, is a public service institution who is ham fistedly trying to organise develop and predict future outcomes - to enable us to schedule resources, building works and to bring expertise into the project. For instance, the payment out to the architects of the North Wall Quay tower about to be demolished, was in the region of 100,000 Euros per month. That is not chump change for anyone. I have no diplomas, degrees or phDs after my name, only a name. But Dave Wetzel told me, he started in live as a bus conductor. Yet he has a better overview of the problem than many people I have heard speak. I see no attempt by our public service in Ireland to engage with the ideas of Wetzel, or any other solutions for that matter. That annoys me intensely.

If you are interested in management and have some time to devote towards continued learning and development, I recommend looking at Clayton Christensen. Christensen is relevant to building and development why? Christensen has done much work to develop theories that help managers in situations where they lack adequate information, or data, upon which to base their decisions. (He was an advisor to Andy Grove at Intel for instance) You are familiar with the movie Minority Report? Well, Christensen’s teaching is nothing like as fanciful as pre-cognition of events before they happen. But if you spend some time, and look at his book, The Innovator’s Solution, you will see what I mean. I made this point to the editors of Plan and Construction magazine, at the wine reception after the tall buildings conference. They must have thought I was bonkers! But lets just say, I hadn't developed my ideas very well at that time. Ken Shuttleworth overheard me talk about Dawkin's theory of Memes that night, and my friend talking about faxes on toilet paper. But heh, I guess we make up a crowd!

Brian O’ Hanlon
garethace
 
Posts: 1579
Joined: Wed May 14, 2003 9:01 pm
Location: Dublin, Ireland

Re: DDDA / Docklands Miscellany

Postby johnglas » Mon Dec 15, 2008 12:30 am

Brian: thanks for that (and I got beyond the second para. without passing out); I can see where you're leading me, but I'm not sure I want to be seduced! You are pushing me back to the time before I became a virgin (as it were). I seem to recall that discussions about the 'real' value of land and property have been about forever and can lead into areas where you need to start from somewhere, i.e. you cannot start from nowhere as you suggest most 'planners' - in a generic sense - actually do. I have been criticised in these posts for introducing ideology (shock, horror), but it's hard to see how you can avoid it. Rather than referencing other authors (academy, again) I prefer to argue things here from first principles and actual experience (not an unworthy starting point) rather than someone else's research (influenced by the standpoint of the researcher).
I'll reflect on what you say and get back to you.
johnglas
Senior Member
 
Posts: 864
Joined: Fri Dec 14, 2007 12:43 am
Location: Glasgow, Scotland

Re: DDDA / Docklands Miscellany

Postby gunter » Mon Dec 15, 2008 12:49 am

This discussion is at the point where it needs notjim!

Anyway, I thought the whole thing with economics was that no one knows how it works.

To do architecture, you have to blank out all of that stuff, you have to suspend normal judgements on the cost of things and try and squeeze every drop of design potential out of the given site, all the time hoping to Christ that the 'added value' will match the 'additional costs', so that some bastard with a calculator doesn't shoot it down before it gets off the ground.

On Brian's point that Liam Carroll 'imported' the concept of private apartment dwelling into Ireland, in the face of the professional opinion of the estate agency community that it wouldn't work, for the record, I don't think that's actually the way it happened.

The way I remember it, all the early Zoe schemes were actually terraces of tiny multi-level houses, even Fisherman's Wharf (phase 1) and Grove Road were essentially terraced houses, it was only after these schemes sold out like hot cakes, despite the fact that they looked like apartments, that the penny dropped and all subsequent Zoe schemes simply morphed into apartment blocks and, before you could say 'shoebox', the profits went through the roof. I could be wrong about the sequence of events, but think it was at this point, after Zoe had proved that it could be done, that the first tax incentive kicked in, and the rest, as they say, is history.

If I have remembered these events correctly, it may suggest that studying the complexities of development economics is no substitute for old fashioned Trial and Error!
gunter
Old Master
 
Posts: 1905
Joined: Wed Jan 16, 2008 10:33 pm
Location: Dublin

Re: DDDA / Docklands Miscellany

Postby garethace » Mon Dec 15, 2008 12:54 am

gunter wrote:On Brian's point that Liam Carroll 'imported' the concept of private apartment dwelling into Ireland, in the face of the professional opinion of the estate agency community that it wouldn't work, for the record, I don't think that's actually the way it happened.


Probably not, but its a nice story!
I listened to one a De Bono interview on You Tube, and he said an Irish business man who read his book, and is now very wealthy, came recently to meet him and thank him.
I wouldn't be at all surprised . . . .

Brian O' Hanlon
garethace
 
Posts: 1579
Joined: Wed May 14, 2003 9:01 pm
Location: Dublin, Ireland

Re: DDDA / Docklands Miscellany

Postby gunter » Mon Dec 15, 2008 9:46 am

That could have been Denis!
gunter
Old Master
 
Posts: 1905
Joined: Wed Jan 16, 2008 10:33 pm
Location: Dublin

Re: DDDA / Docklands Miscellany

Postby garethace » Mon Dec 15, 2008 12:59 pm

I have read historical accounts of the Roosevelt administration in the US, and the institutions it introduced back in the 1930s, to try and stablise the financial and governance system there. We seem to find it very easy to introduce incentive type instruments dealing with the city, but it appears difficult to do anything, that will improve stability at a more systemic level. You might think, as part of the regeneration, that DDDA would have come up with some strategy to encourage retailers in places like Sheriff St by now.

Instead, we are building retail spaces that lie idle for years. In the State We are In, on Radio One, Bucholz stresses this point in relation to apartment schemes here in Ireland during the 1990s. Maybe the government should have waved the rates in regeneration areas for a period, or something. Especially, in those years when we had the money to spend. Instead tenants are often crucified by charges, to move into units which are miles away from civilisation. Yet the inclusion of commercial ground floor space enables DDDA to have pipe dreams about creating 'mixed use'. Here I think Johnglas's point about simply walking around an area on foot, is highly relevant.

Even if the docklands region produced some daft 'over subsidised' idea like this:

http://sustainablerotterdam.blogspot.com/2008/09/club-watt-worlds-first-sustainable.html

I am always reminded of how 'Eco-Cabs' managed to hide behind the hanky of sustainability and 'green-ness' to enable it to pedal a plastic object at 2 miles and hour, down the most crucial bus lane artery of the entire city centre - that of Dawson St. I think it is a dispicable mis-use of the sustainable concept, to grab territory that shouldn't belong to them. But nevertheless, it doesn't undermine the overall concept of incentives for trying new ideas. But in allowing the Eco-Cab to let lose on streets like Dawson St, DCC have done no favours to forwarding the cause of sustainability. They have managed to confound some deep seated suspicions of old world organisations like Dublin Bus that sustainability is a pile of hype. (I wonder if these local authorities have any talent at PR at all)

You can dowload a podcast of Sudjic speaking about his Endless city book here to iTunes or Quicktime:

http://www.businessweek.com/mediacenter/podcasts/innovation/innovation_03_05_08.htm

Its a book that might find its way into a christmas stocking or two this xmas. Its a book aimed at people who shape cities, who makes policies. I suppose the point to make about a book such as Endless city, is the kind of dashboarding of good information it provides. John Thackara makes this point several times also, about the need in the modern world to convert complex information into understandable diagrams, that can be interpreted by a wider variety of 'stakeholders'. (For instance, Dublin Bus might have been brought on board with the concept of sustainable transport, but wasn't)

That was exactly the task facing the team at Dublin airport too. Where they introduced Turner and Townsend as a consultant, who helped them enable to link a costing database software, with their program management software, and subsequently output very good reports, which were simple to read and could be distributed via internet to a wide variety of people. Indeed, Edward De Bono underlines the need for it too, in some of the You Tube video clips. If DDDA had took it on board to become a reporting style of organisation, about the docklands area, it would give them a definite purpose. But, the problem remains, we don't know very much about land, or the value it might have. Nor, have we any future strategy to tackle the lack of good, readable information.

I do feel there is a wasted opportunity to use the resources of a bunch of high qualified people in DDDA, to contribute something useful to the greater goal. Thinking about the 1930s in America, it is time in Ireland now for some new ideas, some new approaches. We have little left to lose right now, in testing out something new. Actually, I do see some reporting going on in DDDA website, in major projects section. Even an invitation for real 'contact' with people. This does show some evidence of some of the right thinking.

OPEN FORUM MEETINGS
Come in for a CUP OF COFFEE between 7.30 and 9.00am in the National College of Ireland on Mayor Square. Our team is happy
to meet the residents, commuters and businesses to answer any questions you might have. Our next meetings are coming up on
• Thursday 28 February 2008
• Thursday 13 March 2008
• Thursday 03 April 2008
• Thursday 17 April 2008


Brian O' Hanlon
garethace
 
Posts: 1579
Joined: Wed May 14, 2003 9:01 pm
Location: Dublin, Ireland

Re: DDDA / Docklands Miscellany

Postby garethace » Mon Dec 15, 2008 1:16 pm

? ? ? An aspiration for Dublin City? ? ?

Deyan Sudjic talks about design and cities.

http://www.dezeen.com/2008/09/15/podcast-interview-deyan-sudjic/

The talk by Sedjic fills in some of the emptiness in my description of what 'innovation' might mean, in our own context. Some very good words of caution too.

Brian O' Hanlon
garethace
 
Posts: 1579
Joined: Wed May 14, 2003 9:01 pm
Location: Dublin, Ireland

Re: DDDA / Docklands Miscellany

Postby jimg » Tue Dec 23, 2008 2:03 am

I'm not sure where to put it but this is the most recently active DDDA thread.

So the two disgraced directors of Anglo Irish Bank were also directors of the DDDA. Surprise, surprise Anglo was the most involved bank in the docklands and provided finance to pretty much every developer who built anything there. So the boys were both in charge of providing finance (through their personal fiefdom Anglo) and permission/direction of where to build (through their position in the DDDA) and even what to build (through their personal and indirect equity interest in various projects). In the US, they would have been clapped in irons and thrown in jail already but I've never heard of white collar crime being punished in this country.

I'm not one for conspiracy theories; I'm generally happy to ascribe to stupidity what others ascribe to conspiratorial malice but this entire affair is simply grotesque, unbelievable, bizarre and unprecedented. In other words, it stinks to high heaven.
jimg
Member
 
Posts: 480
Joined: Mon Nov 22, 2004 9:07 pm
Location: Zürich

Re: DDDA / Docklands Miscellany

Postby gunter » Tue Dec 23, 2008 12:13 pm

jimg wrote:. . . . conspiratorial malice . . . . unprecedented. In other words, it stinks to high heaven.


. . . . or does it just add a nice layer of renaissance intrigue, as if the Medicis were down the docks, still banking, building palaces and picking popes.

Image
. . . we can't say the signs weren't there . . .
gunter
Old Master
 
Posts: 1905
Joined: Wed Jan 16, 2008 10:33 pm
Location: Dublin

Re: DDDA / Docklands Miscellany

Postby garethace » Wed Dec 24, 2008 4:58 pm

Glad the penny has finally began to drop. The analogy with the game of monopoly strikes me as very appropriate. (Wasn't it an Irish person who invented Monopoly?) At best, maybe a kind of self-organising SIM City game. Bear in mind, there was respected and reknowned architectural talent on the board too. For all the good it did. Architects musn't be effective in monopoly games. The real people to suffer were ordinary folk who attempted to design, build and/or engineered the stuff in DDDA area - good, bad or indifferent. I hope this chapter in our urban 'development' puts a lot of people wise to the future.

Brian O' Hanlon

jimg wrote:I'm not sure where to put it but this is the most recently active DDDA thread.

So the two disgraced directors of Anglo Irish Bank were also directors of the DDDA. Surprise, surprise Anglo was the most involved bank in the docklands and provided finance to pretty much every developer who built anything there. So the boys were both in charge of providing finance (through their personal fiefdom Anglo) and permission/direction of where to build (through their position in the DDDA) and even what to build (through their personal and indirect equity interest in various projects). In the US, they would have been clapped in irons and thrown in jail already but I've never heard of white collar crime being punished in this country.

I'm not one for conspiracy theories; I'm generally happy to ascribe to stupidity what others ascribe to conspiratorial malice but this entire affair is simply grotesque, unbelievable, bizarre and unprecedented. In other words, it stinks to high heaven.
garethace
 
Posts: 1579
Joined: Wed May 14, 2003 9:01 pm
Location: Dublin, Ireland

Re: DDDA / Docklands Miscellany

Postby JoePublic » Thu Dec 25, 2008 12:58 pm

Merry Christmas all.

Press release on ddda.ie says the following:

One of the highlights of the year was the adoption of a new Master Plan 2008-2013 which will guide the continued successful development of the area for the next five to ten years.


http://www.ddda.ie/index.jsp?p=94&n=105&a=1088

Does this mean the new masterplan is now law, liffey island etc, canal etc, now has planning permission? Has John Gormley approved it?
JoePublic
Member
 
Posts: 187
Joined: Sun Apr 08, 2007 4:26 pm

Re: DDDA / Docklands Miscellany

Postby garethace » Sun Dec 28, 2008 12:16 pm

It is good hear the positive emphasis in the Docklands Authority end of year statement. To be honest, I haven't had long enough hands on experience in developing a robust planning framework for an area as large and interesting as the Dublin Docklands. But I would observe that some of the fancy 'jargon' used in the titles of DDDA's publications, does display the same problem with language as experienced by our politicians. I.e. Using the English language in a way that makes no sense to anyone – let alone themselves. I think that Liffey island is an example of a 'Campshire' vision that expanded beyond its original brief, to try and move laterally, to occupy the function of a whole economic regeneration strategy. It is simply typical of what designers do, when faced with a subject they have no grasp of - economics - they try to side-step around their own lack of sophistication. (Maybe if architects did attempt to improve this gap in their education, we wouldn't see AIB becoming almost a project manager for shopping centres on the M50 motorway, and Anglo becoming visionaries for development in the docklands region) The planners really needed to invite players around the table to see what the best solution might be. Not to allow Anglo to take the table away from them altogether. What we have again here, is another symptom of 'clutch pencil' isolation-ism.

The wider architectural and design communities have a lot to answer for. Both UCD and Bolton Street spent far too long sitting in ivory towers. I enjoyed many a year in an ivory towers and found people quite civil and agreeable there - but isolated. That in the global environment we live in today, is totally wrong. I hope Waterford/Limerick aren't following the same trend. I don't know about Queens. Designers have allowed their standards of language skills to slip down too far. It is sad to see, so many talented and resourceful people, stunted by this lack of practice in language and its use. It is a symptom of architectural and planning schools 'separation' from the rest of the university campus. They feel they are superior, and there is a heavy price to be paid for that. Their failure to engage that much in other campus activities such as debating and essay competitions - collective knowledge building and sharing. (Why aren't UCD design students exhibiting their work in UCD social areas on campus? Other faculties would be delighted to see their work. We need to seriously start teaching those collaborative skills from the ground up - and award course credits as incentivisation) Architects and planners as a whole, seem full of excuses for not improving their reading/writing capabilities. You can see the results in publications by graduates further down the track. They still design their publications, as if never to be viewed by anyone. The DDDA web site even, is an example of that.

Brian O' Hanlon
garethace
 
Posts: 1579
Joined: Wed May 14, 2003 9:01 pm
Location: Dublin, Ireland

Re: DDDA / Docklands Miscellany

Postby hutton » Mon Jan 19, 2009 5:17 pm

I came across this on the interweb and I thought how appropriate - Canary Dwarf looks like a shrunken pyramid, just like the Irish ponzi property market...

Image
hutton
Senior Member
 
Posts: 993
Joined: Tue Dec 28, 2004 10:14 pm
Location: NAMA HQ

Re: DDDA / Docklands Miscellany

Postby Morlan » Tue Jan 20, 2009 2:19 am

hutton wrote:I came across this on the interweb and I thought how appropriate - Canary Dwarf looks like a shrunken pyramid, just like the Irish ponzi property market...

Image



They should have gone a bit higher here. Below is only three stories higher than Liberty Hall

(sorry, it does look a bit bandy)

Image
(c) Stephen Hanafin. Orig: http://www.flickr.com/photos/shanafin/3194438829/
[url=http://www.archiseek.com/content/showthread.php?t=2780]
Reember these?[/URL]

A bit corporate America.

Image

Image
User avatar
Morlan
Senior Member
 
Posts: 831
Joined: Thu Oct 09, 2003 2:47 pm
Location: Áth Cliath

Re: DDDA / Docklands Miscellany

Postby jdivision » Tue Feb 03, 2009 12:45 pm

Some stuff from the Tribune:


Plans for a new IFSC, dubbed East Village, have been drawn up by state-backed and private landholders in and around Dublin Port once the economic climate improves.
http://www.tribune.ie/business/news/article/2009/feb/01/port-landowners-plan-second-ifsc-for-post-recessio/

Bunch of stuff about George's Quay, IFSC, North Lotts and south docks
http://www.tribune.ie/business/news/article/2009/feb/01/developers-sitting-on-the-dock-of-the-bay/
jdivision
Senior Member
 
Posts: 802
Joined: Wed Sep 28, 2005 4:34 pm

Re: DDDA / Docklands Miscellany

Postby ctesiphon » Tue Feb 10, 2009 11:08 pm

Has this series been mentioned on here yet?

The Urban Landscape Lectures

Dublin Docklands will be hosting three lectures in association with the Architecture Association of Ireland, the Irish Architecture Foundation and the Irish Landscape Institute, on the theme of "The Urban Landscape".

The first lecture is by a Rotterdam-based practice, West 8, best known for Borneo Sporenborg in Amsterdam and who have worked on a number of strategic projects for the Authority.

Boston-based Martha Schwartz will also deliver a lecture on her work. A trained print-maker, Schwartz's use of colour and geometry places her some way between a visual artist and a landscape architect. Her practice designed Grand Canal Square for the Authority.

Agence Ter, a Paris-based architectural practice co-founded in 1986 by Olivier Philippe, Henri Bava and Michel Hoessler will also give a lecture on their work. In 2006 they won the RIAI competition for a Linear Park along the Royal Canal in Docklands and in 2007 they were awarded the Grand Prix du Paysage.

All of these lecture are open to the public and free of charge. Doors open at 7pm and lectures will begin at 7.30pm sharp. There is a maximun capacity of 500 people and seats will be allocated on a first come first served basis.

* 12th February 2009 West 8 - Martin Biewenga
* 5th March 2009 Martha Schwartz Partners - Martha Schwartz
* 26th March 2009 Agence Ter - Olivier Philippe


http://www.ddda.ie/index.jsp?p=94&n=341&i=112

How will you recognise me? I'll be the one being forcibly removed from the Martha Schwartz love-in.
User avatar
ctesiphon
Old Master
 
Posts: 1949
Joined: Fri Apr 01, 2005 3:39 pm
Location: Dublin

PreviousNext

Return to Ireland