Olympia Theatre Portico

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This topic contains 34 replies, has 18 voices, and was last updated by  GrahamH 11 years, 2 months ago.

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  • #707478

    GregF
    Participant

    I heard that the wrought iron portico of the Olympia Theatre has been destroyed by a truck ploughing into it this morning. No need to worry I suppose …it was due a bit of refurbishment, and could be easily replaced.
    Need to worry more about the amount of extremely bad drivers on Irish roads …..especially those driving lorries.

  • #748416

    Punchbowl
    Participant

    That is of course assuming they actually do replace it!

  • #748417

    GrahamH
    Participant

    Yikes – suppose it was waiting to happen, what a pity.
    It least it did before the current restoration plans were carried out.

    Wonder what damage was done – I think a pic is in order.

  • #748418

    Lotts
    Participant

    Amazing that nobody was killed or injured and lets be grateful for that.
    But now who’s going to pay for this to be reinstated – I heard the news mention the City Council – but surely they don’t foot the bill? The drivers insurance must cover this.
    They’re expensive yokes those classical examples of Victorian glass and ironwork – Todays indo reports Olympia architect Siobhan Sexton as saying that the intention now was to restore the canopy with the damaged pieces, but the cost was likely to be higher than the €100,000 estimate prior to the accident.
    Anyone got a photo? All those camera phones and not a photo between us!

  • #748419

    GrahamH
    Participant

    I have some but you’ll have to wait till later for them to be uploaded 🙂
    As suspected it was featured in the ‘news in brief’ section on News 2 last night, and what a sorry sight, with the canopy (mostly in one piece) lying on its side on the ground. It seems the truck hit the right-hand supporting column, sweeping it clean away causing the canopy to collapse directly downwards.
    The left column is still there, with the beam linking to the building, but that’s it.

    It is a miracle no one was killed, either by the truck or the collapse. On the radio this morning it was whinged about why the truck had to knock into a 110 year-old frilly canopy, instead of Busáras.
    To take something from the incident, at least a better restoration job can be done now 🙂

  • #748420

    GrahamH
    Participant

    Ok – here’s the first of 3. They don’t show very much as the canopy has obviously been taken away:

  • #748421

    GrahamH
    Participant

    (Lovely windows upstairs there)
    Here’s some detail from where the canopy ripped off:

  • #748422

    Paul Clerkin
    Keymaster
  • #748423

    GrahamH
    Participant

    Was the coloured glass original – always looked a bit suspicious…

  • #748424

    burge_eye
    Participant

    Is it just me or has that portico deflected attention from the otherwise awful facade?

  • #748425

    Lorcan
    Participant

    god the olympia really needs a makeover doesnt it?

  • #748426

    Lotts
    Participant

    Is this really going to be restored? I heard from an eyewitness that the broken portico was getting thrown into truck – ie : not carefully placed numbered and wrapped. Cast iron and glass is not the most robust material to be throwing about. More needless damage was caused in taking it away and it looked like it was being skipped rather than phase one of a sensitive restoration.
    Can anyone verify?

  • #748427

    Devin
    Participant

    So sad about the portico. Was much of the coloured glass smashed?
    Ironically the theatre got planning permission last year for various work including the refurbishment of the portico & widening of the pavement there by a metre (Ref. 5880/03). Portico damage probably wouldn’t have happened had that been done by now cos the truck backing out of the lane would have backed a bit further in a straight line to reach the road & so would’ve missed it. But as fin used to say it’s academic now cos it’s already happened.
    It should be refurbished according to the principles of best conservation practice – with the emphasis on retaining maximum original fabric & minimum replacementof original material. Far as I know the DCC Conservation Oficer was down after it hapopened.

  • #748428

    burge_eye
    Participant

    @lotts wrote:

    Is this really going to be restored? I heard from an eyewitness that the broken portico was getting thrown into truck – ie : not carefully placed numbered and wrapped. Cast iron and glass is not the most robust material to be throwing about. More needless damage was caused in taking it away and it looked like it was being skipped rather than phase one of a sensitive restoration.
    Can anyone verify?

    New signage put up overnight. Looks like they put at least 5 minutes thought into it.

  • #748429

    Lotts
    Participant

    The new sign although of poor design quality, looks rather like it’s here to stay rather than a tempory measure till restore is complete.

  • #748430

    jackscout
    Participant

    Any images of the tempory/semi-permanent sign… just to see how little thought went ito it?

  • #748431

    Lotts
    Participant

    Sorry – no photo yet.

    Anyone know how were they able to install that sign on a protected structure without applying for planning permission? [or did I miss it?]

    Here’s the original pp for restore of the canopy which was granted permission back on the 18th Nov 2003

    http://www.dublincity.ie/planning/decis/year03/week47.pdf
    App 4736 /03

    Location: The Olympia Theatre, 72 Dame Street, Dublin 2. Proposed development: Restoration of cast-iron canopy and glazing to Dame Street elevation. Increase to footpath of one metre at Dame Street entrance. Alteration of signed to Dame Street elevation. Painting to Dame Street elevation. Restoration of sash windows, alterations to central ticket office in entrance lobby. Enlargement of stalls area. Removal of WCs to the rear of stalls. Alterations to Sheridan’s Bar and Maureen’s Bar. New fire exit from Maureen’s Bar to Sycamore Street. Demolition of single-storey structure at Crampton Court. Erection of four-storey structure at Crampton Court to include WC areas and storage. Alterations to dressing rooms and wcs at first floor level and general refurbishments internally. This application involves works to a protected structure. Applicant: Olympia Theatre.

  • #748432

    Lotts
    Participant

    Here’s the latest on the ongoing sage.
    The delay is being blamed on the lack of granite in the city… Interesting in light of some of Devin’s comments re: Henrietta street

    Indo

    Time is yawning for theatre awning

    IT IS one of the longest-awaited openings in the Olympia Theatre’s history.

    Staff at Dublin’s famous city-centre venue are frustrated that its newly restored canopy has still not made its debut over two years after it was taken down.

    The ornate architectural awning has languished in a Scottish engineering firm’s warehouse since it was severely damaged after a truck backed into it in 2004.

    A veteran employee has accused Dublin City Council of holding up the installation of the canopy, which has been fully repaired for over a year.

    Maureen Grant (81), who is believed to be Dublin’s oldest serving barmaid, said the council has not fulfilled its promise to widen the path below the structure.

    The city council previously stipulated that the path on Dame Street had to be extended by two feet before the canopy could be re-erected.

    Its painstaking restoration has already caused a lengthy delay since the intricate, multi-coloured glass and lead structure was shattered.

    The council said its erection depends on the availability of granite to extend the path. A spokesperson said a contractor has been appointed to carry out the work and expects to complete it “this side of the summer”.

    The canopy was erected around 1900 and was manufactured by the Saracen Ironworks in Scotland. Heritage Engineering later bought the old foundry.

    It was restored by experts at the Glasgow firm.

    ANNE-MARIE WALSH

  • #748433

    hutton
    Participant

    @lotts wrote:

    Hsince it was severely damaged after a truck backed into it in 2004.

    Ah yes back in the days when trucks used to drive thru the city :rolleyes:

    Good call Lotts I was wondering what was happening here.

  • #748434

    ctesiphon
    Participant

    @lotts wrote:

    The delay is being blamed on the lack of granite in the city.

    Is that a lack of original granite, or a lack of the white stuff?:rolleyes:

  • #748435

    phil
    Participant

    Surely the canopy was not as much a hindrance to pedestrian movement as the various smoking ban hoardings surrounding the bars up and down the rest of the street.

    edit, thanks for posting this Lotts. I had been wondering what was happening with it.

  • #748436

    urbanisto
    Participant

    Great to see the Olympia being active in restoring the canopy. What a bizzare reason for not going ahead though…no granite! Do you think a member of the public could get access to the Marrowbone Lane Works depot where all the old paving is rumoured to lie…gathering moss as it were.

  • #748437

    Devin
    Participant

    Re: Granite

    There’s a dirty white granite pavement along there now. It would have concrete flags and the old fawn-colored granite kerbs until a few years ago, but it was replaced because the council weren’t enforcing the “listed” status of the old kerbs … and because the new stuff looked good when it was put down …..

    I don’t understand what the council mean this time by the “availability of granite”. There is no issue because the old kerbs are gone … new white granite is freely and cheaply available.

  • #748438

    manifesta
    Participant

    @StephenC wrote:

    What a bizzare reason for not going ahead though…no granite! Do you think a member of the public could get access to the Marrowbone Lane Works depot where all the old paving is rumoured to lie…gathering moss as it were.

    They have to be hoarding it somewhere!

    You know, in more uncivilized times medical students used to hop into Glasnevin to rob bodies for anatomy research (hence the cemetery’s watchtowers, in case ya didn’t already know). So in that spirit, if it’s time for a bit of granite resurrectionist activity, I’m in. I’ve got my pith helmet around here somewhere…

  • #748439

    Devin
    Participant

    Hope I’m not sounding like a broken record, but it really needs to be questioned what they did with all the granite – complete pavements or just kerbing – taken up in recent times for works such as Luas.

    Both Luases got a completely new street treatment in the city centre. Streets like Harcourt Street, Abbey Street and Chancery Street would’ve had a lot of old granite. Where was it all put, and why do they claim they’ve run out of it now (as they did in the recent Henrietta Street case)? Did they sell it off to help rebuild Iraq or something?

    There used to be a huge mound of it piled up in the yard of that Marrowbone Lane depot (which is located between Guinnesses & Cork Street). I saw it myself a few years ago. But it’s gone now.

  • #748440

    constat
    Participant

    @grahamh wrote:

    Ok – here’s the first of 3. They don’t show very much as the canopy has obviously been taken away:

    Graham,
    I’m no architect, but maybe you or someone out there in architecture-land can tell me who gives permission for building façades to be painted?
    The picture of the beheaded Olympia scaffold’s my perspective on this; the building adjacent to the Olympia with its bare brick looks great whereas the flaking beige paint of the Olympia looks really shoddy, and its not only here, its all over Dublin; bright blue façades, yellow façades along the quays…..

  • #748441

    urbanisto
    Participant

    I read a piece last week in the Irish Times that the portico will finally be restored later this month once the pavement works have been complete. Eh what pavement works? I hear you say… Exactly….can’t see any sign of them and surely the widening of the pavemnet along Dame Street is not something that can be done in 2 weeks….seeing that its taken 1 year to do just a section of Capel Street! Meanwhile the surface of Dame Street must be the worst in the city as any cyclist or driver that uses it will know. Another great maintenance job by DCC

  • #748442

    GrahamH
    Participant

    26/8/2007

    Well as deadline after deadline slipped by, look who was finally caught slinking along Dame Street of an early Sunday morning 🙂

    Aww – it looks so cute bundled up all nice and cosy.

    The canopy looks magnificent in its newly restored condition – the detail is so crisp, and the coloured glass so vivid.

    Fantastic job!

    Then later in the day, the delicate task of hoisting it into position began.

    Quite a few expert hands on site to manage the job.

    It’s wonderful that the firm who built the canopy around 1900 are the same company responsible for its restoration and reinstallation: Heritage Engineering of Saracen Ironworks in Scotland.

  • #748443

    GrahamH
    Participant

    The newly-painted cast iron columns look magnificent in bright and playful fire engine red.

    While various pieces of cornice/guttering are arranged on the ground awaiting erection.

    Surely that granite gutter a few pics up can be diverted away from such an important area. What is the obsession with gutters in the middle of pavements in this city?! Why can’t surfaces slope down to the road?

    All in all though it looks like a great job. Now the icing on the cake would be a decent reinstatement of sash windows to the left facade – this meagre cost would make for an enormously positive contribution to the theatre facade and wider streetscape.

    In a way the modest facade is the most characteristic feature of this institution: it follows the Georgian tradition of plain facade treatment with an architectural flourish only permitted about the doorcase – in this instance the canopy – while concealing a riot of internal decoration and plaster contrivance, as with many of the music halls of English and Irish cities in the 18th and 19th centuries. Restoring the facade to a venerable condition would do much to heighten this effect, even if the neighbouring building would appear to be a later acquisition. Hopefully its shopfront will also be receiving some sympathetic treatment.

  • #748444

    hutton
    Participant

    This is excellent news – I was getting somewhat pessimistic about it, wondering if it would ever return. Agree with Grahams points re ticket office signage + windows; a few pence there would really round off what appears to be a magnificent job. Thumbs up, it’s wonderful to see this reinstated to such a high spec. 🙂 🙂

  • #748445

    Lotts
    Participant

    Well that’s made my day!
    Thanks for the wonderful pictures Graham.

  • #748446

    Anonymous
    Participant

    I also want to add a Thanks Graham;

    I’ve been in Dublin twice in 2007 and know earlier about whats going on than most of my friends working in the Dublin built environment field!

    Canopy’s and trucks are always a problem; they had the right idea in the 1960’s make them out of concrete as trucks don’t hit concrete!

  • #748447

    -Donnacha-
    Participant

    I always hated that thing. Cant believe its being replaced exactly as it was. The colours look like a cheap Xmas lantern decoration. Should have had a competition to restore the facade and put in a new (modern) canopy. Oh well.

  • #748448

    Rory W
    Participant

    @archipig wrote:

    I always hated that thing. Cant believe its being replaced exactly as it was. The colours look like a cheap Xmas lantern decoration. Should have had a competition to restore the facade and put in a new (modern) canopy. Oh well.

    But many people love it – and let’s face it – today’s modern canopies are tomorrow’s dated monstrocity (remember concrete canopies in the 70’s – yuck)

  • #748449

    GrahamH
    Participant

    @archipig wrote:

    The colours look like a cheap Xmas lantern decoration.

    And your point being exactly?

    🙂

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