Re: Re: Cork Street Ghetto

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A point well made. Indeed I found it interesting how the new seven story yoke going up pictured above is located right next to 1960s (Fitzgerald?) blocks. Were these new apartments not going up, the common perception would be that ‘the flats’ are the problem, or their design. In fact the 60s blocks have greater appeal that the newly constructed box.

It’s always the architecture and the nature of development (usually high-rise) that is criticised, when in fact greater issues are at work. Of course a decrepit environment and bleak structures can contribute to social exclusion and problems, but it is generally maintenance more than anything that’s at fault.
It is frustrating that not even one of the iconic towers of Ballymun is being preserved – what not? It seems there are a great many people who want to stay living in one/some of them. Why not internally refit one or two of them instead of building yet more happy-clappy multicoloured two-storey houses?

In much of the early colour footage from 1969 of the newly-built development, the towers really do look quite elegant – indeed the architecture of the crisp pre-cast panels has always appealed to me; the scheme is much better than some of the stuff thrown up in the UK 10 years previously. Again it seems to be a case of ‘cleansing’ the area, as if the architecture is the sole issue. The fact that not even one of the buildings is being retained amongst the sunnny new development says it all I think.

Whatever about the 8 storey blocks, the towers are quite iconic at this stage. To sweep every scrap of Ballymun’s past is a shame I think; if nothing else one could stand as a reminder of a mistake not to be made again – and not necessarily architectural.

You’re right Frank about it being Dolphin House Flats – not least as there’s always ‘Dolphin House’ banners hanging about the place 😮 (always thought this referred to just one block or ‘house’).

Here’s a picture from another site:

You can see the elegant formation and the nature of the setting – a lovely place from the outside at least, don’t know what the courtyards are like.

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