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Higher buildings are not a dense idea

With housing demand so acutely outstripping supply in many areas of Dublin, the recent publication of the Irish Urban Development and Building Heights Guidelines for Planning Authorities calling for local authorities to evaluate their current planning policies on taller buildings in urban areas is badly needed. Today, average Dublin building heights are lower than in other comparably sized European cities, including Amsterdam, Copenhagen, and Stockholm. The arbitrary” height caps on taller buildings in Irish cities no longer makes sense. It has simply resulted in areas that are in need of redevelopment and regeneration being under-utilised or left idle as any proposed development was deemed to be financially unviable.

As Ireland starts to adopt and embrace taller buildings, it will be important that we place a strong emphasis on their design, quality, sustainability as well as the impact that these buildings will have on our cityscapes.

Good design and architecture improves lives. It creates better buildings and makes better use of the earth’s limited resources. This was reinforced to me during a business trip this week, when I had the opportunity to view Dubai’s next mega project, The Royal Atlantis Resort & Residences. A unique architectural design, inspired by ancient civilizations and their architectural design masterpieces. Due for completion later this year, this enormous, modular 43 storey hotel will house nearly 800 guest rooms and more than 230 serviced apartments. Its design originality is already winning many awards including the coveted Best Real Estate Project (Luxury Residential) at the recent Gulf Real Estate Awards 2018.

The Royal Atlantis Resort & Residences is being constructed by a joint venture between Six Construct and Ssangyong…….it would be a great project to be involved in from a planning/project controls perspective as it is certainly pushing engineering boundaries.


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