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2010 – Criminal Courts of Justice, Dublin

Architect: Henry J. Lyons & Partners

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The new criminal courts complex in Dublin, designed by Henry J Lyons Architects, is among the most technologically advanced courts facilities in the world. Situated on the corner of Parkgate Street and Infirmary Road, the complex contains 22 courtrooms of varying sizes.

Located at the eastern tip of the Phoenix Park, its siting continues the tradition of placing public buildings within sight of the River. The circular form gives equal weight to both city and park creating a more definitive threshold to both. Its simplicity and conviction gathers the disparate elements of the brief into a singular identity. Segregating judicial, juror, public and custodial circulation systems is a significant challenge, while directing natural light to each of the courtrooms is a feat rarely achieved in multi-storey criminal court facilities.

The saw toothed glass facade expresses the double height courtrooms within. A perforated metal screen controls glare and maintains privacy. The entire becomes both an acoustic barrier and energy efficient double skin; creating varied shadow and visual interplay.

The Criminal Courts of Justice is the largest courts project undertaken in Ireland for over 200 years