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Three green infrastruture projects shortlisted for Irish Green Cities Award 2021

Three green infrastruture projects shortlisted for Irish Green Cities Award 2021


The Irish Green Cities Award encourages successful, ambitious, inspiring and innovative green infrastructure projects. The Award is an initiative being delivered as part of the More Green Cities for Europe campaign. More Green Cities for Europe sees 13 European countries work together to highlight the added value of green space in urban environments. In Ireland, the programme is led by Bord Bia, in partnership with the Irish Hardy Nursery Stock Association.

This year three projects have been shortlisted; Cork City Parklets, Elizabeth’s Tree House (Barretstown) and Opus Building (Dublin). These projects demonstrate the core values of the awards and highlight the impact innovative green spaces can have on a community.

The Cork City Parklets project allows emerging designers and makers to showcase their talents and gain valuable experience developing their creative careers and promoting craft. The parklet project facilitates the inclusion of creative groups, each parklet has a partner business that funds the maintenance of the parklets and a community group who is responsible for the planting. Each parklet dedicates over 30% of its total area to pollinator-friendly planting. The parklets are planted with seasonal, locally sourced plants that provide food and shelter for pollinators. In addition, the parklets create an opportunity for neighbours without urban gardens to meet-up outside, older people to rest in a busy urban street environment, and young people to socialise in a high quality urban green space. This project was submitted by Siobhán Keogh.

Elizabeth’s Tree House is a new dining pavilion for the Barretstown Camp in Kildare and offers a powerful demonstration of architecture’s role in the healing process. Serving children recovering from serious illnesses and their families, the space forms a timber oasis in the middle of an oak forest, showcasing the wonder of the natural world inside and out. A dynamic yet functional timber diagrid system includes an expressive roof, extensive glazing, and a colourful larch cladding, creating an interior dining space that forms a dialogue with the surrounding lake and forest. Inside, an adaptable layout is subdivided into engaging spaces for people of all ages, creating an engaging environment to aid children on their road to recovery. This project was submitted by MDO Architects.

The Opus Building is a maritime inspired residential development in Dublin that provides a wide range of high-end quality apartments. Taking in its entirety, the scheme represents a positive vision for city-centre living, where demands for urban housing are met through an architecture that responds proactively to its context. In contrast to its rectangular, restrained neighbours, the Opus Building strikes an active tone throughout, be it through its curvilinear expression, transparency to the street, or generous, green residential amenities. This project was submitted by MDO Architects.

These three shortlisted projects will now be assessed further and the winner of the Irish Green Cities Award 2021 will be announced shortly. The winner will represent Ireland at the European Green Cities Award 2022.

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