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Extending the Cultural Quarter

Designs for the new Dublin City Library on Parnell Square have been unveiled. The 11,000 sq m design is set to be a key component to the newly-branded Cultural Quarter. The Cultural Quarter includes: the Irish Writers’ Centre, the Dublin Writers Museum, the Gate Theatre, Poetry Ireland and the Garden of Remembrance.

The build is anticipated to take between two and three years, and will involve the restoration of a Georgian terrace on the north square. This is where the library will be housed – in six restored four-story-over basement Georgian houses – and will spread across two additional houses located on the square. Construction of a new building will take place behind these original units and a new public plaza will border the library and the Hugh Lane Gallery at Charlemont House.

Conservation Architect Yvonne Farrell spoke about the build saying it ‘celebrates the real value of the city [and] renews wonderful 18th century houses…weaving the historic and the contemporary together in an exciting way’.

The build has a budget of €100million, 45% of funding will come from Dublin City Council, and will facilitate: a music centre, design space, innovation hub and business library, 200-seat conference space, education centre, café and exhibition areas. Funding will be split between Dublin City Council and philanthropy. The State has no committed any funding.

City architect Ali Grehan has created a contemporary design featuring a mezzanine level, lots of light from both east and west, a roof terrace and roof gardens with views over the city. The development aspires to attract 3,000 visitors daily.

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