There is an interesting seminar taking place in the Civic Offices of Dublin City Council this evening (details below) While I disagree with the contention that apartments are the way of the future, I accept that they play in important role in providing urban living for the masses and I would like to see a shift towards lifestyle in their design and planning. Unfortunately, I cannot make the event at Wood Quay this evening myself but I urge buyers who are considering apartments to go along, listen to the proposals and share a few ideas…

Design your own apartment block

Thu, Nov 18, 2010

DUBLIN City council is hoping to persuade people – and in particular families – to put down roots in the city centre by encouraging them to build their own home in a design that suits their lifestyle.

It’s inviting anyone interested to Dublin House, a seminar being held tonight at 5.30pm in the Civic Offices on Wood Quay chaired by Dublin City architect Ali Grehan.

The session will test the waters to see if there are enough individuals and groups of friends/family members interested in building small developments of two to six residential units in Dublin city to live in.

Grehan says families are put off living in apartments because they have no creative control. “Houses are in limited supply. The future is apartments but there’s no opportunity to extend them.

“They are very limited. If people were planning to start a family they might be more tempted to set up in the city centre if they could design an apartment that suits their current and future needs.”

In the 1930s and 1940s many small terraces of houses in Dublin were built on a very small scale – a person who owned or acquired a piece of land would build six or seven homes, live in one himself and sell the others,” says Grehan.

“Georgian Dublin was also built this way – plots capable of accommodating one house were sold to individuals who built on their plot to a broad set of design rules, which is how the random uniformity of the Georgian terraces was achieved.

The recent way the market has provided housing and apartments in particular, removes people from the process of design.”

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