Re: Re: Dublin Street Lighting

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This period ushered in a dark period, quite literally, for the city centre’s street lighting.
All of the grand concrete posts on O’Connell Street were removed, along with those on Westmoreland St, College Green and possibly Dame St. The only ones to survive were those of O’Connell Bridge, D’Olier St and College St – about 17 in all.
They were replaced with double and single floodlights mounted on the city’s buildings directed down onto the streets. Unfortunately for O’Connell St they merely contributed to the flashy tacky nature of the place, and eroded the linear nature of the street, so expertly generated by the previous posts:

In around 1980 the two northern concrete posts on O’Connell Bridge also disappeared, to be eventually replaced with nothing but tall motorway-like posts with about 3 lamps attached way above at the top.

As part of the city’s ‘Millennium’ celebrations, O’Connell St finally got a bit of care and attention – albeit superficial – with the unification of the median space and the erection of heritage-style three-arm lampposts: their bases and shafts replicating the city’s Victorian stock:

Of their time, but effective and attractive – they provided pools of light amongst the foliage of the great plane trees, made the median feel more secure at night and looked well in their own right during the day. Only a handful now remain on the upper end of the street, and are about to be removed.

This period saw positive and perhaps negative things happen on O’Connell Bridge.
In an inspired move by Dublin City Council all of the lamps on the bridge were restored to their original glory, if not better with the parapets back to three arms and the medians back to their five armed splendour – the first restored precisely 80 years after they were altered.

(1st pic Archiseek)

The copper heads of the lanterns could be a new feature as in black and white pictures they always seem to be have been black. The material’s presence on Grattan Bridge too now would suggest it to be a contemporary modification.

However the last of the concrete posts on the bridge were removed from the southern end in around 1999 – an appropriate move given the works on the bridge lanterns and their fitting out with bright white bulbs, but marking the end of an era. The subsequent piece-meal removal of some of the remaining posts on D’Olier St and College St should not have/be happened/ing.

We’re now seeing the execution of the first unified lighting scheme involving posts on O’Connell Street in nearly 70 years – including the median, side pavements and plaza.
Whatever one may think of the new scheme, it is welcome to see lampposts once again regaining a central role (perhaps too literally :)) in the public domain of the country’s main street.

Just a note on the dates stated – where hyphenated this refers to the approximate period in which the posts were erected/removed rather than the length of time the process took. In most, if not all cases, schemes would have been executed inside a few days or weeks.

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