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February 28, 2008

HKR, Make and Gehl to redesign Dublin’s City Markets

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A collaborative design team formed by HKR Architects, Make Architects and Gehl Architects has been selected to redesign and redevelop Dublin’s famous City Markets. Focusing on the redesign and revival of the site of the 19th century fruit, vegetable and fish markets near the Four Courts, north of Dublin’s River Liffey, the project is to be completed on behalf of the Markets Regeneration Consortium, and forms part of Dublin City Council’s Markets Area Draft Framework Plan. The project was led by Nick Sutton from HKR, Ken Shuttleworth from Make and Helle Scholt from Gehl.

The brief was to develop a new gastronomic centre for Dublin with the redeveloped fish market site as the area’s focal point. The brief also included the proposed regeneration of the Fruit and Vegetable Market building at the heart of the mixed-use development. In response, the strong working collaboration between HKR, Make and Gehl has produced a design which opens up the site and transforms it into a dynamic new urban focal point with the creation of a generous new public space. Combining world-class architecture with the creation of a generous new public space, the proposals will revitalise the area with a rich mix of uses including retail and wholesale markets, residential and office accommodation, and food shops and restaurants.

At the heart of the site, the Fruit and Vegetable Market is preserved within an upgraded structure and is fronted by a spacious new public square. The surrounding buildings contain office and residential accommodation on the upper levels, with retail, restaurant and cafe spaces on the ground floor bringing renewed activity and animation to the streets and the new public square.

The winning proposal connects the new area to all aspects of Dublin’s city centre through the use of Dublin’s light rail network, the LUAS. In addition, the design opens up the area to views and access from both Temple Bar to the south of the River Liffey and from Henry Street, one of Ireland’s busiest shopping streets, to the east.

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