Twitter Facebook Vimeo Youtube Google Plus Pinterest Tumblr
mythumbnail

2009 – Westmeath County Council Civic Offices and Library, Mullingar

Architect: Bucholz McEvoy Architects

civic3

civicciviccivicciviccivic

civicciviccivicciviccivic

civiccivicciviccivic

Westmeath County Council Headquarters is a low energy civic office building located at the heart of an important archaeological site. The building is an open and transparent building of public service and is carefully woven into the historic archaeological context, creating an ensemble of new and old buildings, which together bring new meaning and civic values to this site. The new building is a civic place, internally a sculpture of light, created primarily with glass, timber, and concrete, externally an open and transparent expression of local government. The structure is designed to provide a vessel for the transparency attributed to local government, a civic building accessible by all, while providing both a comfortable work place and a pleasant experience for visitors.

The building form is principally organized in two axes and two buildings; one north-south which contains the library and cafe and establishes the principal relationship with the existing County Building, and the other an east-west curved office block. The library is accessed from the main public space with its double height reading room addressing the public park. The curved office spine looks to the south, addressing a new public park over the excavated ground.

This naturally ventilated building maximizes passive design principles and creates an environment in-balance with the nature. The design of a structure in its construction and operation consumes less of the environment’s natural non-renewable resources. A double facade combined with an atrium lung serve to effect all of the ventilation in the office building.

The main atrium of the building is conceived of as a light-filled glass and timber hall, where the presence of the existing County Building and the historical remains are linked. Movement across the site, through the building, and to the public park takes place through this space constantly reinforcing the connection to County Building. On the first floor link bridges connect the existing County Buildings to the reception/meeting room at the intersection of the bridge and the office block.

The building form is principally organized in two axes and two buildings; one north-south which contains the library and cafe and establishes the principal relationship with the existing County Building, and the other an east-west curved office block. The library is accessed from the main public space with its double height reading room addressing the public park. The curved office spine looks to the south, addressing a new public park over the excavated ground.

The entirely naturally ventilated building maximizes passive design principles and creates an environment in-balance with the nature. The design of a structure in its construction and operation consumes less of the environment’s natural non-renewable resources. A double facade combined with an atrium lung serve to effect all of the ventilation in the office building. The double facade acts as a ventilation chimney driven entirely through wind pressure, while acting as an acoustic barrier. The double facade ensures fresh air supply year round, without opening a window out to the noisy train tracks. The atrium, the main public space, is also the ventilation lung of the building, providing supply air to the offices.