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Architecture Awards

These are Ireland's favourite new buildings

Three Dublin buildings claim the Public Choice honours at this year’s Royal Institute of the Architects of Ireland awards.

THE NEW STUDENT Centre at UCD has been named as Ireland’s favourite new building by the Royal Institute of Architects of Ireland, claiming the crown ahead of two other Dublin buildings.

The centre, designed by Fitzgerald Kavanagh and Partners Architects, gained 18 per cent of the popular vote, beating 32 other shortlisted buildings in the Public Choice category in this year’s Irish Architecture Awards.

The RIAI described the centre as “an exciting building which embraces many of the guiding principles of universal design”

It is evident that the design team engaged with a carefully considered the end-users throughout the design and construction phases.

The 11,000 sq metre building, which was developed with student funds following a student referendum in 2006, features a 50 metre Olympic-standard swimming pool, a 125-seat theatre, a 90-seat 3D cinema and a world-class debating chamber designed as a ‘mini-parliament’.

The architects say that the building is designed to act as a “foil to the grey homogeneity for which the campus is known”.

Second place went to the Contemplation Space in the Mater Hospital, which was designed by architect Michael Goan.  Goan says that the structure provides “a retreat for reflection away from the busy processes and interactions associated with the functioning of a large hospital.”

Third place went to the Temple Bar Umbrellas by Sean Harrington Architects, a solution to Ireland’s ever-changing weather.

All pictures courtesy of the RIAI

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