Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council’s approach to architecture was recognised at the prestigious Royal Institute of Architects of Ireland (RIAI) 2020 Awards announced on the RIAI Website. The RIAI Awards acknowledges and promotes the best work being carried out by Irish Architects in achieving quality in the built environment in 2019 and highlights the contribution that architects make to society for everyone’s benefit. This year, the RIAI announced 12 Award Winners across 11 categories and dlr architects received commendations in two categories of the RIAI Awards.
Rosemount Court Dundrum which has an area of 0.9 hectares and provides 44 high quality dwellings set around a shared community ‘green’ was Highly Commended in the Living Category. The architectural form of the development is deliberately urban and promotes a high degree of overlooking and passive surveillance to public areas which gives the inhabitants a secure sense of place and community. The visual impact of car parking has been minimised by integrating it into building setbacks with screen planting while the use of ‘home-zones’ provide informal play and amenity space. A short film of the dlr Architects about Rosemount Court was shot as part of a series of 10 films commissioned by the Irish Architecture Foundation for Open House Dublin 2020 https://openhousedublin.com/locations/site-specific-rosemount-court/
Rochestown House, Sallynoggin Phase III was Commended in the Sustainability Category of the Awards. It is the third and final phase in a trilogy of projects set in the former walled garden of Somerton House in Sallynoggin. It provides an additional 14 fully Passive House designed dwellings to the site, including two ground floor full wheelchair accessible units. A fabric first approach with advanced Heat and Power Mechanical Heat Recovery Ventilation (MHRV) provides fresh air which in combination with high levels of airtightness ensures high internal comfort for residents. The use of green roofs on the new buildings replaces lost green areas and provides for water attenuation. The provision of communal facilities, an all-purpose room that can be used also by the civic groups helps develop ties between the residents and the wider community. Including appropriate planting such as a variety of apple trees with bay laurel hedging recalls the former use of the area as a kitchen garden at Rochestown House.
An Cathaoirleach Councillor Una Power said:
“Energy and Buildings are an important aspect of Climate Action for Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council. The environmental, economic and social sustainability of the buildings are considered in the designs of all dlr housing. Energy efficient design minimises fuel poverty while providing much needed family housing with green spaces”.
Also at the RIAI Awards the architectural practice Architectural Farm received a Commended in the Research category for Fernhill Creative Play on behalf of DLR. For this project as part of Cruinniú na nÓg, they worked with local schools St Mary’s National School and Stepaside Educate Together National School to develop concepts for a future Play Policy for DLR.
SEAI Awards 2020
Separately SSE Airtricity won the Energy in Buildings category at the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI) 2020 Awards for their deep retrofit refurbishment works of Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council’s Moyola Court, Churchtown. The houses were built in the 1970’s and before their upgrade were in poor condition. Supported under the SEAI Deep Retrofit programme, the installation of innovative heating technologies, advanced insulation, heat pumps, renewable generation and battery storage resulted in these inefficient units becoming some of the most efficient and comfortable in the country. The houses were upgraded using Passive House retrofit principles and the BER ratings improved from G to A3 which had a hugely positive impact on the residents.