Vibrant New Urban Quarter Set in the Heart of Kilkenny City Launched. - Construction Network Ireland - Construction Network Ireland

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Published in Construction on 05/07/2018

Vibrant New Urban Quarter Set in the Heart of Kilkenny City Launched.

CNI reports

Former home of Smithwicks Bewery set to become a vibrant new urban quarter in the heart of Kilkenny City

Acquired by Kilkenny City Council in 2016, the 10 acre site that until 2013 housed Diageo’s Smithwicks Brewery is set to become a vibrant urban quarter in the heart of Kilkenny city. Taking its name from the remains of the 13th century Franciscan Abbey, which will form a central feature of the development, Abbey Quarter will be a living and working destination for the local community as well as international and national businesses.

The vision of the detailed masterplan and design guidelines adopted by Kilkenny County Council to guide the development of the site is for Abbey Quarter to seamlessly complement the medieval city as an inclusive place for an inter-generational community to work, live and play.

The masterplan for the entirety of the development includes:

  • 14 new blocks creating a new urban quarter to complement the existing city centre.
  • Capacity for almost 60,000 sqm (645,000 sqft) of mixed-use residential, commercial, retail, education and civic space.
  • New public, landscaped spaces including a new 2.5 acre public plaza/urban part at St. Francis Abbey.
  • Refurbishment of the old Brewhouse to provide almost 4,450 sqm (47,850 sqft) of unique, grade A office space.
  • A new linear park running along the banks of the River Nore.
  • Conservation of historic buildings on the site including St. Francis Abbey. 

With interest in the development already strong, Aoife O’Neill of Lisney, agent for the development remarked, ‘Abbey Quarter is attracting businesses looking to provide their employees with something more than just a place to work, thsi is an exceptional location for companies seeking outstanding global connectivity and the capacity to attract high calibre talent.’ 

Brewhouse will be the first building to be developed and will provide a range of flexible grade A office options. The building can be let in its entirety, as 3 separate floors (average 1,480 sqm – 15,940 sqft) or up to 12 offiec suites varying from 302 sqm (3,250 sqft) to 480 sqm (5,170 sqft). The new building is designed to achieve LEED gold standard. Originally the centre of bewing operations, it is located beside the old abbey and has frontage on to Horse Barrack Lane which is being complete re-landscaped to provide high quality public space, all within a few minutes walk from High St. in the centre of the city.

The Mayfair, originally built as a ballroom, is steeped in local heritage and once refurbished will offer almost 1,540 sqm (16,576 sqft) of naturally ventilated, well-lit and flexible office space and form a gateway to the Abbey Quarter. The north side of the building is close to the old city walls which followed the river Breagagh. The renovation works will be sympathetic to its location at the ‘Watergate’ which connected the old city centred on the castle and the less prosperous Irishtown centred on St. Canice’s Cathedral.