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2012 – MAC, Belfast, Co. Antrim

Architect: Hackett Hall McKnight

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This commission was won after a RIBA International Design Contest in 2007. Completed by Hackett Hall McKnight in February 2012 and provides performance spaces, art galleries and supporting facilities. The building completes the newly established St Anne’s Square, a new public space for the city, and engaging with the pre-existing street network. The project deploys an architectural language drawn from the traditional brick warehouse and mill buildings of Belfast. The qualities of these buildings derive from the methods of construction and the simplicity of the details.The construction uses the structural insitu concrete as well as the brick as an exposed finish. A glazed tower sits atop the volcanic stone facade to create a beacon above the surrounding rooftops. The solidity and substance of this tower offers a contrast to the ‘pattern book’ pastiche of the square, conferring a sense of age and permanence to the space.

Photography is by Christian Richters