Re: Re: The Western Quays
The logical conculsion of your argument is that if anyone wants to get rid of any building all they have to do is buy it and let it go to ruin. That’s certainly how business was done in the past in this city (see the South Great George’s St thread for a perfect example), but no more. Haven’t you ever heard of a ‘duty of care’? It’s an eyesore because it wasn’t cared for, not because it’s a poor building.
1) I don’t know any conservationist who would espouse any of your five points, but there is a perfectly good argument for the protection of this building. It is a relatively intact example of a building of its period that, though not of the first rank, is more significant due to its rarity, i.e. if they were ten-a-penny the case for protection would be weaker but, as one of the few Georgians on this stretch of the quays (otherwise blighted by mucky urban renewal apartments), there is a stronger argument for its retention.
2) The building ‘is an eyesore’ because it has been allowed to deteriorate, not because it was inherently ugly to begin with.
3) Why does it need to be ‘re-developed into a spanking example of a Georgian building’- retaining good examples of more modest buildings is as important as retaining the Fitzwilliam and Merrion Square examples. Then as now, not everyone lived in palatial splendour.
4) ‘If people want to see great Georgian architecture, they will go to Bath or Edinburgh’: Dublin is acknowledged as one of the great Georgain capitals of Europe, regardless of the vandalism and neglect that took place in the 20th century. Further, Bath Georgian and Edinburgh Georgian are as different from each other as they are from London Georgian, Dublin Georgian and Cork Georgian. A quick look around any of those cities would tell you as much.
5) Further again, the argument that one city can satisfy the scholar’s, the layman’s or the tourist’s (or the philistine’s) desire for a particular style of architecture probably applies more to contemporary design with its global aesthetic (Calatrava in Dublin, Gehry in Bilbao, Heneghan Peng in Cairo, etc. etc.) than to Georgain architecture with its regional variants, and there is good reason to believe that this trend might only become more pronounced due to the desires of many architects to stay one step ahead of the pack and to the instantaneous transmission of ideas around the world. The stage is now the world, not a town or country.