Value Creation | Intellectual Property

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Design A - Shallow Dome 2 Storey Enclosure ( 2 no.) + Viewing Platform Opposite on Merchants Quay

Projects / Urban Design / Four Courts Atria

Location : Dublin, Ireland

Date : >2020

Client : TBC

Concept  : Darragh Murphy 2016


The Four Courts is Irelands foremost Courts Building , located on Inns Quay in Dublin.The Design is based upon work commenced by Thomas Cooley in 1776. Following his death,

the Architect James Gandon was appointed to finish the Building. The Building sustained significant damage in 1922 and was reopened ten years later

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Project Proposition

The Four Courts is one of Irelands finest examples of Georgian Architecture but access to the Public is limited due to its function.I propose Roofing the Courtyards using 2 identical Structures to create new Semi Public / Public Spaces. This proposal would enhance and compliment the Four Courts whilst providing exciting and sophisticated Civic Space for Dublin City. These 'Urban Living Rooms' would be multi functional meeting places and allow for Exibits, Performances, Public Lectures, Conferences, Social Events, Dining etc. 

The new Spaces could be accessed separately via installation of new Glazed Booths within the Gates. If in due course the Four Courts Buildings were to be transformed into a Museum then the addition of these Courtyard Spaces would greatly enhance such a Proposition. There is Potential for an Enlarged National Museum with capacity for a Larger range of Exibits in a less cluttered layout. 

With the Addition of these Court Spaces and alongside other Architectural Interventions including a new Public Realm directly opposite on Merchants Quay the Buildings could in time become a World Class Museum Attraction comparable with those of London Paris Madrid etc. In such a scenario Admission Fees would be justifiable creating long term Tourist Revenue. Tapered Admission Fees for Irish Citizens ( Initial visit charged with subsequent visits charged at Nominal Annual Fee

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Axonometric View of Shallow Dome Option


The Existing Trees on Inns Quay should be removed to fully reveal the Building to the City and a New Viewing Plaza possible incorporating a Bridge Link/s is proposed opposite the Four Courts on Merchants Quay so as to allow for Improved viewing of the Building. This Plaza would be classical in Layout in order to Harmonise with the Four Courts. 

This Space would also create a Buffer Zone for the Public against Heavy Quayside Traffic. 2 links bridges would result in Optimum Vantage Points for viewing the Architecture of the Four Courts. The Proposed 2 Storey Courtyards are barely visible from these Vantage Points. 

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Courtyard looking South

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Courtyard Looking North


OPTION B - Full Height Hyperboloid Enclosure

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Proposed Link Bridges & Viewing Plazas to Merchants Quay. These Proposals also create a spin off Opportunity for Valuable Urban Rejuvenation directly opposite the Four Courts. This might include a Fresh Development Opportunity on the Site of MQI with potential for them to Relocate to a Purpose Built Facility.

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Potential World Class Museum & Associated Urban Renewal

to Riverfront and Immediate Northside & Southside Vicinity

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Project Description


Architectural Intervention in the form of 2 identical Hyperboloid Structures. This proposal Fully encloses the Courtyards but is more Visible on Approach from Inns and Merchant Quays. It is Potentially a more spectacular Duo of Civic Spaces when experienced both Internally and Externally but with Less Flexibility in terms of Floor Plate Usage. Public Plaza , New Bridge Approach also proposed for this Scheme. 

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Illustration of Potential for Future Urban Regeneration 

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Proposal opens up Opportunity for Broader Urban Regeneration including new Urban Quarter between Merchants Quay and Cook St. Also Creates Potential for several new Urban Vistas / Links to Four Courts,  Existing Churches and Civic Offices