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DUBLIN HEADQUARTERS EXTENSION /

location / Abbey Street, Dublin, Ireland
status / under construction
design team / L.Krzycka, R.Pieszko, R.McCauley as a part of a design team
at McCauley Daye O'Connell Architects
size / 2,791 sqm

conservation & redevelopment

We had worked at McCauley Daye O'Connell Architects on a design for a new high quality contemporary extension to the existing building of headquarters of the client located next to unused Scots Presbyterian Church at Abbey Street.

The design proposes to convert the church and ancillary buildings, which are protected structures, into office and public use. Additional space will be provided in the form of new floors which will float above the church hall independently from the protected fabric. The Hall which is standing next to the church will be enveloped and protected in a new 7 storey naturally ventilated glass building which will be built sensitively around and over it. Full Planning Permission was granted in August 2008.

office building

photo by L.Krzycka - all rights reserved

office building

photo by L.Krzycka - all rights reserved

office building

photo by L.Krzycka - all rights reserved

office building

photo by L.Krzycka - all rights reserved

office building

photo by L.Krzycka - all rights reserved


THE DESIGN CHALLENGE /

The proposed development will involve refurbishment of unused Scots Church and associated Parish Hall into additional office and customer areas for our client, along with a seven storey extension around the same buildings. Given the fact that existing buildings on site are protected structures, careful consideration was given to the proposed design and construction methodology of the extension so that the character of the existing fabrics were maintained and protected.

The City Planners requested a very detailed design response at the planning stage so the innovative design and its impact on the protected structures could be fully assessed. A team of specialized consultants including conservation, structural, services and facade design were assembled. The challenge was to create a dynamic design which will respect and preserve the significant cultural, religious, historical and architectural heritage of the protected church, whilst meeting the client’s requirements for new state-of-the-art and environmentally friendly office accommodation.

The site was conceptually divided into two zones: the public interface and the private work spaces. The public spaces are at the ground level with the existing Church becoming the main public entrance to the VHI Healthcare. This would be excellent opportunity to give the Church its life back and would allow people who previously may have never stepped foot into the building to enjoy its architectural merits. The new 7-storey extension envelopes and protects the Hall within the glass skin. This provides a variety of private working spaces in the refurbished Hall and flexible open space areas on floors suspended above.

The proposed development will enrich the existing built environment of the Abbey Street area by providing high quality public space and elevations. It will integrate with and improve the street line creating interesting views from surrounding parts of the city, especially from the South Quays of the river Liffey and potentially could become an activation point for rejuvenation of the area.


DETAILS OF CONSTRUCTION AND SUSTAINABLE METHODS EMPLOYED /

It is proposed to construct a seven storey building above the existing Church Hall by installing a series of mini-piles as a foundation base adjacent to the existing walls which do not interact with protected fabric. The new office floors will be suspended above the Parish Hall using a lightweight steel and glass exoskeleton structure. A glass and steel skin will enclose the hall and will be wrapped around the church - a centre piece. The opaque perforated panels and transparent glass will create a uniform lightweight shell which corresponds to the existing Church in its pattern and detail.


The challenge to the design team was to develop a naturally ventilated building in the city centre which would enhance the ecological aspects of the proposed extension while retaining the flexibility and quality of commercial office spaces. This was achieved using a mixed mode ventilation and natural ventilation via stack effect. A series of ventilation panels have been introduced onto the south and east elevations. The external face of these panels is composed of a metal plane perforated in a triangular motif which has the required free area for ventilation. Perforated panels have been carefully designed to sympathize in their nature with the Tracery in the Gothic windows of the Church and would add a subtlety to the façade.

scale model

scale model