The RIAI (Royal Institute of the Architects of Ireland) is administering a competition on behalf of the competition promoters, Meath County Council www.meathcoco.ie This is an open, two-stage architectural competition for the development of an indicative master plan and for the design of a new Headquarters Building for Meath County Council and Navan Town Council.
County Meath – Ireland’s Heritage Capital – was once the territory of the High Kings of Ireland. Some of the most important historic sites and monuments are located within County Meath and virtually every important aspect of Irish history from prehistoric times is associated with the county.
Navan contains areas of outstanding natural resources such as the river valleys of the Blackwater and Boyne and built resources such as buildings, bridges, interesting street patterns, mottes, castles etc. The Blackwater River meets the Boyne River on the eastern side of the town at the ancient Poolboy Bridge and many beautiful riverside walks are available along the river. In addition Navan town is identified as the County’s principal administrative, service, industrial, social and cultural centre. The town offers a number of attractions and facilities from shops, cinema, pubs, hotels and restaurants to golf courses and horse racing. Completed in 2006, the architectural award winning Solstice Arts’ Centre includes a 320-seat theatre, three visual-arts areas and a café bar, The Solstice is now hailed as one of the Republic’s most impressive arts venues outside of Dublin.
The proximity of Navan to Dublin has had a major effect on the town’s social and economic development. The population of the town and its environs has increased by 28% since 2002 and the population of the greater area of Navan was 24,851 in 2006.
Meath County Council owns a 2.913 HA (7.2 acre) site on the north side of the town between the N3 and the Blackwater River. It is their intention to develop this site as a focal point for civic activity within the town that will serve to link the town centre to the proposed park and to the walks along the Blackwater River. In addition they are proposing to place two or more key buildings on the site that will support this vision.