Buidling at Ringsend Rd and South Dock Road

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This topic contains 30 replies, has 20 voices, and was last updated by  Anonymous 8 years, 10 months ago.

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  • #709110


    Hi all,
    newbie here, I’m new to this forum so forgive me if i don’t have terminology or the chops to keep up on the architecture discussion. I just have a query regarding an unusual building i walk by on my way to the office every morning. It’s just past the Ringsend bus garage, going east, on the junction of Ringsend Rd and South Dock Road. Grand Canal Wharf on the left and Shelbourne dog track on the right.

    This building is an unoccupied peculiar oddity on this road. There has been a lot of building activity around it recently. A standard apartments + retail and office complex has shot up in the past 3-4 months around this building. The builders have been careful to leave this building unaltered and unscathed. I presume it must be a protected building. It seems to have all the characteristics of (correct me if i’m wrong) a 40s-50s building.

    If you can see through the scaffolding and low res image you might see the characteristics
    a small curved concrete roof just above the entrance,
    rounded corners,
    red brick,
    unusual long windows,
    it seems similar in style to the IIB building on Sandwith St. that used to be a garage.

    I’m really curious to know if this is a protected building and what it’s original purpose was. It may be connected to the bus garage it used to neighbour. I’ve been walking by it for a long time now and everytime I walk past I start to daydream what might have gone on behind it’s unusually long windows, the light must have been really poor. It has a really old nostalgia feel to it… like Bolands Mills or the IIB building.

    So, I would appreciate if anyone could enlighten me? Is it protected? what was it’s original purpose? is it going to be restored/reinvented? Who was the architect? Are these style of buildings common? Is there a name/history for this architectural style?


  • #786755


    Hi Pauloneill,

    I have long admired this building. Quite the little gem as far as I am concerned. It is on the list of protected structures as follows:
    @Record of Protected Structures, Dublin wrote:

    Number 7551: Ringsend Road (Corner of South Dock Road) Former Irish Glass Bottle Company: three-storey , Dublin 4 brick office with glass block entrance, feature window and clock

    I was looking at it a few months ago and it seems the interior was mainly gutted during its incorporation into the new building which is surrounding it. I am not sure who designed it, but it reminds me of some sort of strange mix of early modernism and ‘The Amsterdam School’, which the Ringsend flats around the corner are inspired by. The clock is missing at present, but I am sure it wll be replaced upon completion of the works.

    The full list of protected structures can be downloaded on this page:

  • #786756


    It was originally longer, with a rectangular rear section stretching away from Ringsend Road along South Dock Road. The now-demolished section was plainer in execution, but no less integral to the overall design. Still, we can be glad that the front section remains as it too was threatened with demolition in the late 1990s or so, afaik.

  • #786757


    @pauloneill79 wrote:

    …it seems similar in style to the IIB building on Sandwith St. that used to be a garage….

    You are the first person I ever heard use that name for the building!

    I must be getting old

  • #786758


    Thanks for the info guys.

    I can see the comparisons with the amsterdam school upon a quick inspection from wikipedia. It’s intersting that an unusual, shortlived and (what seemed) very colloquial style such as the Amsterdam School would have been adopted here.

    I’ll try to get another shot of the building with the clock on after they eventually take down of the scaffolding.

    As for the IIB building I was sure it’s not commonly referred to as that but i couldn’t think of what it was called, i just see the IIB logo on the building as I go by every morning on the dart.

  • #786759

    Paul Clerkin
  • #786760


    Hi all,
    So the cover was finally taken off the Irish Glass Bottle building last week and I have a shot of it here to post.

    While popping out to get something for lunch this afternoon I noticed a group standing on the opposite corner. They were all attentively listening to one man. He seemed to pointing up to the building and telling the rest of the group about it. I eavesdropped for the few moments that I was passing. It sounded like he was saying that the shades situated on the struts out of the building were designed to move in accordance with the intensity off the light.

    Sounded very Hi-tech to me. I really like the new windows they have inserted into the new building. The red brick looks so snug when fitted in between all the glass and steel πŸ™‚

  • #786761


    Wow, that’s really quite attractive; I really like it.

  • #786762


    It looks like someone’s taken the lid off the old building and dropped a new office block into it! I’ll need to go take a looksee this weekend.

  • #786763

    Paul Clerkin

    Doesn’t really work from that camera angle imo

  • #786764


    Does the rebrick section project / have anything over it? Maybe it is just the angle, but it looks like two flat screens stuck onto the modern yoke. Doesn’t do the retained section or the new building any favours. Perhaps I’ll join Sarsfield for a look over the weekend. πŸ™‚

  • #786765


    Well, I’ll just have to agree to disagree with y’all! πŸ™‚

    I think the contrast between the soft curves & colour/textures of the lower block, and the stark, angular top glass floors is precisely what makes it. I think that building is far, far more interesting (if a tad eclectic) than either style would be on their own.

    A 7-storey glass tower on it’s own would be yet another bland, contour-less, colourless, texture-less, cuboid block. The lower 3 stories is very attractive (IMO), almost a bit art deco-ish, but I’m not sure how well it’d work if it were a larger building.

  • #786766


    Passed this today. Imo itÒ€ℒs not a satisfactory result. If the new building was going to come that close to the old one, it would have been better to engage with it more meaningfully Γ’β‚¬β€œ e.g. if the glazing followed the curved profile of the deco building. Also, it’s not in the picture, but there’s the old reliable angled-canopy roof over a penthouse at the top, which imo looks hackneyed and tired.

  • #786767


    I passed by today and took a couple of camera-phone pics. It still doesn’t look right to me.

    The new building and the old facade just look totally disjointed.

  • #786768


    What a pity: it is such a fun little building and you would think the architect would have had fun carrying it up into the new building, the curve for a start and then some nod at the vertical feature in the center. This just looks awkward which is no fun at all.

  • #786769


    I assume they had a pre-existing plan which involved demolition of this building?
    (and thus, when that became a non-runner, just cut off the part of their design which would have necessitated the destruction of the small one?)

  • #786770


    I agree notjim….. a complete lack of imagination shown here. Mind you look at the whole development…its not exactly screaming out architectural genius. The end result is awful. A waste of a good opportunity.

  • #786771


    Hello all,
    back again, but this time with more of a footnote to the previous posts on the former Irish Glass Bottle factory.

    As I trudged through my normal route to work this morning a new curiosity has popped up breaking the routine from croissant shop to desk. A new sign was erected over night right on the footpath opposite the aforementioned building. The pole has several slender cyan blue signs jutting out at various angles. The font size is way to small for passing traffic to read so it must be pedestrian signage. The signs seem to point pedestrians to notable buildings landmarks of the area;
    Grand Canal Dock Station,
    Waterways Visitor Centre,
    Tower Enterprise Centre,
    Grand Canal Square,
    Sandymount Strand,
    Shelbourne Racetrack.

    So who has put this new sign there? Dublin City Council? Local enterprise. Is this a new initiative by DCC to put pedestrian signs around the city centre… I wonder will this not just add further clutter to road signage?

    Here’s a rough cameraphone shot

  • #786772


    looks similar to the signage in the IFSC which would point the finger (so to speak) at the DDDA.

    if its aimed at pedestrians, why does it have a “P” symbol on it?

  • #786773


    DDDA’s work I believe. It’s impossible to read those signs from a distance. Even as pedestrian signs, the text should be at least twice as big.

    You’re right shweeney RE the parking info, how the fuck are you meant to read these from a vehicle?

    Another in GCD

  • #786774


    @shweeney wrote:

    if its aimed at pedestrians, why does it have a “P” symbol on it?

    So you can find your way back to your car, I presume. πŸ˜‰

    For the record – and somewhat off the point – these are quite like the ‘wayfinding signage’ proposed by JC Decaux as part of their public realm enhancement programme. I don’t mind the design, but the design is totally independent of the advertising boards.

  • #786775


    Seems ARUP Engineers have moved in here, according to the todays IT


    Arup engineers a sustainable agenda in its new offices

    “Engineering firm Arup has moved from its Wellington Road offices to a new, sustainable, staff-friendly home in Ringsend, writes Environment Editor Frank McDonald

    ARUP, the global design consultancy, has long been at the cutting-edge of modern building technology. So it is entirely appropriate that the firm’s Irish branch recently vacated an amalgam of Victorian houses on leafy Wellington Road and moved into a cutting-edge building in Docklands…

    …Interestingly, there are only 16 car-parking spaces at basement level in the Arup building and many more spaces for bicycles, which are heavily used by staff….”

  • #786776


    Hey all, doing thesis and wondering if anyone knows anything about the 4 storey apartments across from the arup building on south docks road. when they were built etc? looking at old cad maps there was a factory on this site before!

  • #786777


    here’s an aerial photo if it helps anyone

  • #786778


    Mid-1990s? Maybe a little earlier?

    One thing I do remember about them- there was a line of trees between the boundary wall on Bridge Street (I thought this was Ringsend Road, but apparently not) and the balconies of the blocks just behind the wall. I thought it softened the buildings quite well, and possibly reduced noise inside, but sadly the trees were all felled a couple of years ago. Perhaps they were blocking light, but the road is the poorer for their loss.

    Probably not much help re your query, I’m afraid. πŸ˜‰


    This is the wall in question. The trees were tallish and slender- poplars, maybe?

    Also, I’m really not sure re the date at all.

  • #786779


    Thanks, appreciate the input, I have them dated circa 1996. Found a planning application for alterations to one of the apartments. Also I think you’re right about that being Ringsend Road, Bridge Street to my knowledge begins on the Ringsend side of the bridge.

  • #786780


    @y2jireland wrote:

    . . . I have them dated circa 1996.

    Would you believe 1990?

    Shameless auctioneer’s brochure, with sail boats frolicing in ‘The Gut’ at Ringsend!

    The architect was Anthony Reddy, who now looks about 32, which means he would have done this scheme when he was thirteen.

  • #786781


    Phew – my datedar was being thrown completely off course with a confirmation of 1996. The product of an 80s-90s intermingling if ever you saw one. 1990 would be spot on.

    “Cosgrave Brothers (who have an established track record as design innovators)”


  • #786782


    Gunter, why do you keep these things?

  • #786783


    Heh- I had a feeling gunter would be the one to come up with the goods here.

    @gunter wrote:

    Would you believe 1990?

    I would- just about. My gut feeling said they could have been earlier than mid-1990s – partly for stylistic reasons, partly due to my personal memory cue for this site (passing in my uncle’s car, which gives a narrow date range) – but I was having a hard time convincing myself that this site was redeveloped so early in the evolution of the wider docklands.

  • #786784


    I quick look at them would have seen the ‘Cosgrave Bros woz ere, 1990’ plaques that they always put on their buildings πŸ™‚

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