New York-based studio Steven Holl Architects (SHA) has proposed to create seven new quadrangles of open green space, designed to enhance the University College Dublin campus' historic features and woodlands. SHA will be designing the Centre for Creative Design and Entrance Precinct spread over approximately 24 hectare area. The design envisions to create a “circuit of social connection,” which will encourage creative collaboration and interaction, and allow students, faculty, and visitors to peer into maker and classroom spaces through glass walls.
“The Centre, set by a plaza and a reflecting pool, displays prismatic forms inspired by the geology of the UNESCO World Heritage Site, the Giant’s Causeway. It features abundant use of natural light, which is captured by two vertical structures angled at 23 degrees, mirroring the earth’s tilt. The auditorium echoes the shape of UCD’s iconic dodecahedral 1972 water tower; the Centre’s towers respond to the water tower’s pentagonal pillar,” the SHA informed through a press release.
On winning the competition, Steven Holl said: “We are very honored to win. It’s a very important and inspiring project for Steven Holl Architects and we look forward to working with UCD. Our masterplan and the new UCD Centre for Creative Design are not just iconic objects − they reflect on the history and quality of UCD’s campus, responding to the particulars of the site to create place and space.”
Professor Andrew J. Deeks, President of University College Dublin and competition Jury Chair, said: “Holl’s vision is intriguing and striking — combining an iconic design for the Centre for Creative Design with a masterplan distinguished by a few considered, highly intelligent moves that open up the centre of the campus and use creative landscaping to intensify its natural beauty.”
The competition received expressions of interest from 98 teams in 28 countries with contenders including Diller Scofidio + Renfro (US), O’Donnell + Tuomey (Ireland), Studio Libeskind (US), and UNStudio (Netherlands).
SHA was supported by Dublin-based Kavanagh Tuite Architects, analysts Brightspot Strategy, structural engineers Arup, landscape architects and urban designers HarrisonStevens, and climate engineers Transsolar.
Founder: Louise Blouin