Winner of competition to design a New Urban Primary School at Harcourt Terrace announced

The Minister for Education and Skills, Jan O’Sullivan, T.D., today announced that Tún architecture + design is the winner of an architectural design competition for a new primary school in an urban setting.

The Competition was to design a school for a specific site at Harcourt Terrace, Dublin 2. The site comprises the former Garda Station and Irish Film Censor Building, overlooking the Grand Canal.

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This wonderful site posed design opportunities and challenges that Tún architecture + design exploited successfully. The brief was for a 24 classroom primary school, with Special Needs Classes, with a total floor size of approximately 4,500 square metres.

This Competition followed the very successful 2012 competition to design a post-primary school, and a 2013 design ideas competition for a primary school. Design competitions emphasise the commitment of the Department to excellence of design in providing for the learning spaces of the future.

This latest competition was an architect-led full design team competition. There were an impressive number of 70 entries received for the competition with several coming from abroad. The competition jury selected a shortlist of 5 entries to develop their designs in a 2nd Stage.

Commenting on the winning design, Minister O’Sullivan said, “The aim of this competition was to focus on creating innovative places of learning, fit for the students of today and tomorrow. I am very pleased with the standard of entries and wish to congratulate Tún architecture + design for their winning elegant design. Tún architecture + design are a young Dublin based practice who bring a fresh approach with simple yet refined ideas to school design. Their team included Engineers Waterman and Moylan Consulting and Quantity Surveyors Nolan Construction Consultants.”

“I am delighted to announce that my Department also intends to award the commission to the winning Design Team to develop their design and construct the school on the Harcourt Terrace site. This project is included in the recently announced 6 Year Capital Programme and is scheduled to go to construction in 2017.”Learning Corridor

“I also wish to congratulate the other four commended schemes for the tremendous effort and innovation they have demonstrated in their detailed entries. The winner will receive a €20,000 award. The other four shortlisted entries will receive €5,000 each.”

“The outcome of this competition is a great success with a very worthy winner and commended highly innovative shortlisted entrants. This again confirms that design competitions are a great option for procuring school designs teams.”

The competition was an opportunity for the Department of Education and Skills to explore with architects and educationalists the development of innovative architectural designs that respond to emerging 21st century needs of primary school learners and teachers. The Pedagogical Brief attempted to inspire designs that are innovative and that can accommodate future changes in learner needs and pedagogy over the coming years.

Street EntranceThe Minister thanked the judging panel for the competition that included national and international renowned architects and educationalists, with representatives of the Department of Education and Skills. The Royal Institute of Architects in Ireland administered the competition on behalf of the Department.

Winner Tún architecture + design Dublin
Commended GKMP Dublin
Commended ARPL Scotland
Commended Seán Harrington Architects Dublin
Commended Carmody Groarke England