Iconic Building Overlooking St...


Iconic Building Overlooking St. Stephen's Green To Be Demolished

Ellen Butler
Ellen Butler

07:12 31 Jan 2023

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Another part of Dublin's streetscape is set to be demolished.

Planning permission has been granted for the demolition of the Stephen Court building, located on St. Stephen's Green northside.

Designed by Andy Devane, it has overlooked the green since first opening in 1971, and was once home to Anglo Irish Bank.

It lies between numbers 17 and 22 St. Stephen's Green - both protected structures.

Stephen Court Limited has been given approval to replace Stephen Court with a new office development - over 21,000 square metres in size - an arts facility, retail space, and public courtyard - totalling seven storeys in height. The office space will expand from 14,000 to over 21,000 square metres.

It's not yet known when works are scheduled to begin.

However, the decision has been branded "a disgrace" by an architectural historian.

Emma Gilleece is urging Dublin City Council to reverse its decision, which she says would see the totally unnecessary demolition of "a perfectly sound building";

"There's architectural merit to this building, that's case number one. But even, number two, the real cost is the materials, the energy, the labour, and the transport of materials to replace this building. If we really are committed to the climate crisis, this is not the way to go around it - demolishing a perfectly sound building that could be retrofitted and adapted for re-use."

The architect behind Stephen Court, Andy Devane, also designed the churches at Dublin Airport and DCU, the Irish Life centre on Abbey Street, Tallaght Hospital, and a number of schools in the city.

Architectural historian Emma Gilleece thinks the demolition is something we will regret;

"If we keep knocking mid-20th century buildings at this rate, we'll won't have anything to show in the city for the 20th century... This is the most vulnerable in Irish architecture. This is the equivalent of in the 1960s when we were demolishing Georgian architecture."

Photo credit: Google Maps.

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Andy Devane Dublin City Council Emma Gilleece St Stephen's Green Stephen Court Stephen Court Limited

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