- This topic has 9 replies, 8 voices, and was last updated 12 years, 3 months ago by Anonymous.
December 25, 2008 at 2:17 pm #710324nneliganParticipant
I am often amazed how in Germany and elsewhere historic buildings such as the Frauenkirche in Dresden, the Stadtschloss in Berlin (in the process) and almost the entire centre of Nuremburg have been rebuilt. I learned recently that this was due to the rigorous German ‘Denkmalschutz’ http://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Denkmalschutz
Germans take enormous pride in their urban heritage and have tried where possible to rebuild many of the buildings lost in the war. Whereas many architects dislike pastiche buildings, quite often they add to the ambiance of a particular area. Indeed recent reports in the Berliner Zeitung discussed how unhappy Berliners are with Potzdammer Platz and how soulless it is, eventhough it is replete with some spectacular pieces of modern architecture.
As the regular contributors to this thread know, many buildings in Dublin were ‘lost’ over the last fifty years, not all of course were of architectural merit. However I was wondering what buildings which were lost, deserve to be rebuilt. On a simple level the ESB offices in Fitzwilliam Street could easily be moved elsewhere and the original sixteen houses reconstructed. I would like to see the Tholsel rebuilt somewhere near to its original location (of course that is just my own view)
December 25, 2008 at 5:35 pm #805463AnonymousInactive
I would dearly love for there to be some kind of replication of this in Dublin. Reconstruction of those buildings sadly lost and restoration of those still there. If I had to choose though, the first thing that would come to mind would be a complete restoration of Henrietta Street. In my opinion it would only be fitting and appropriate for it to be first.
P.S Merry Christmas/Happy New Year everyone.
December 25, 2008 at 5:58 pm #805464AnonymousInactive
This is complete nonsense- many important buildings in Germany which even survived the war were levelled in the 60s and 70s for vandalistic road projects: the entire inner cities of Stuttgart (City Hall and Kronprinzpalais to quote famous examples) and Frankfurt (RÃ¶merviertel) are testament to this. And even now in Germany many older buildings are disrespectfully treated and insensitively modernised (especially their interiors). Recently for example it was in all seriousness proposed to completely rebuild the interior of the Staatsoper Unter den Linden in Berlin, totally destroying Paulicks Neo Classical interior (itself a post war reconstruction). Dresden itself is in serious danger of losing it’s UNESCO status because the city authorities have insisted on ramming through a controversial bridge project close to the city centre. Indeed apart from a few key buildings many of NÃ¼rnbergs reconstructions are substandard 50s cheapo concrete piles, and it too suffers from the car fixated planning of the 50/60s, having as is usual in german cities a “stadt autobahn” on the former moat.. Things have improved there certainly but Germany is actually far from being a paradise for architectural presentation.
December 25, 2008 at 11:31 pm #805465AnonymousInactive
The current generation of architects is completely devoid of any concept of beauty, elegance, or proportion. They throw around trendy intellectual terms to justify their rubbish in the same way that similar linguistic garbage is used to justify the ridiculous art of the Turner prize. It’s a postmodern disease. It’s a condition which would demand the rejection of the reconstruction of, for example, the georgian perfection of St. Stephen’s Green South, were it to be destroyed by a jumbo jet; or indeed the reconstruction of the portions of that same magnificent block which are currently occupied by rather ridiculous modern buildings. I’m confident that a time will come when these witless conmen will lose control of architectural discourse, and there will be a return to architectural sensitivity and a pride in our cities. When that occurs, cities like Dublin and Limerick will be reconstructed in all their splendour as shining examples of what future architects can only dream of achieving, visions of cities sculpted for admiring and living in before the imperialis/capitalist excesses of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. I fear, however, that the soulless postmodern stagnation of the current jargon-obsessed architecture may go on for some time yet, and while it does there’s no prospect of reconstructing Dublin in its splendour. Instead we must bear more “contextually sensitive” glass boxes and blank stone walls in the middle of georgian terraces, with backslapping at a job well done by all those gratified that they felt directly addressed by the accompanying booklets detailing, in nauseatingly sesquipedalian fashion, the intellectual vigour of those involved in the crimes.
December 25, 2008 at 11:39 pm #805466AnonymousInactive
This is complete nonsense- many important buildings in Germany which even survived the war were levelled in the 60s and 70s for vandalistic road projects . . . Indeed apart from a few key buildings many of NÃ¼rnbergs reconstructions are substandard 50s cheapo concrete piles, and it too suffers from the car fixated planning of the 50/60s, having as is usual in german cities a “stadt autobahn” on the former moat.. Things have improved there certainly but Germany is actually far from being a paradise for architectural presentation.
Now hold on a minute there searbh.
Nurnberg was 90% flattened in the war, the ‘cheapo 50s stuff” was never reconstruction of historic fabric, it was new build to the prevailing architectural standards. Anywhere restoration or reconstruction was attempted, the standard was far from poor.
In Germany, typically the city ring roads were laid out in the 19th century, not ‘in the 50s and 60s’, and crucially the civic authorties usually took enormous care to retain the historic walls and gates of the city, with the redundant defensive moats usually replaced by linear parks as well as circular boulevards, which in turn, were often fronted by new civic buildings, like opera houses and train stations, as at Nurnberg!
I’m sure it’s possible to find individual cases where German cities have chozen to do the wrong thing, but that would still contrast with Dublin, where doing the wrong thing seems to be the default position.
December 26, 2008 at 12:13 am #805467AnonymousInactive
I take on board some of Searbh comments but not all; however I disagree that my observations are nonsense. Kevin Roche has often remarked how he mourns the destruction of much of Dublin’s historic fabric between the 50’s and the present day. As I mentioned in my earlier post I am not averse to modern architecture, I understand that like most professionals they are bound to clients (developers) with a poor aesthetic taste. There is room for both modern and reconstructed architecture. The former in new areas such as Docklands and the later in the historic centre of the city.
Anyway here is a link (in English) to the German equivalent of the National Trust
December 26, 2008 at 11:51 am #805468AnonymousInactive
Here are a few more links that may be of interest
Here is an interesting online guide from the National Park Service in America:
December 26, 2008 at 12:56 pm #805469AnonymousInactive
I was wondering what buildings which were lost, deserve to be rebuilt.
There was a previous thread on this topic: https://archiseek.com/content/showthread.php?t=6015&highlight=reconstruction+dublin
My number 1 for rebuilding in Dublin would be the crescent of Georgian houses in front of St. George’s Church and the axial street. What a definitive setpiece of Georgian planning that was. We had nothing like it!
December 26, 2008 at 1:18 pm #805470AnonymousInactive
The hideous Ulster bank building on College Green. It’s just so offensive. Would be great to see all the modern buildings across from it getting the chop also.
December 26, 2008 at 2:49 pm #805471AnonymousInactive
Thanks, I didn’t know there was a previous thread, I’m kind of new to the discussion board – which is a remarkable resource. In relation to reconstruction around St Georges Church, I could not agree more, the whole area was let go to pot along with Henrietta Street down the road and Mountjoy square.
By the way does anyone have an image of the original Molyneux House on Bride Street? I know there is one in Peter Preston’s book, but there doesn’t seem to be one in the Architectural archive.
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