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Limerick National School is Top of the Class in the Public Choice Award at the RIAI 2019 Architecture Awards

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Limerick National School is Top of the Class in the Public Choice Award at the RIAI 2019 Architecture Awards

Limerick National School is Top of the Class in the Public Choice Award at the RIAI 2019 Architecture Awards
June 12
09:35 2019

The Royal Institute of the Architects of Ireland (RIAI) has announced An Ríocht, Scoil Chríost Rí, Boys National School, Caherdavin, Limerick (pictured above), designed by Drake Hourigan Architects, as the winner of the Public Choice Award at the RIAI Architecture Awards 2019. The school which is located on the northside of Limerick City beat off tough competition from a shortlist of 41 projects which included entries from Cork, Dublin, Galway, Kerry, Kildare, Limerick, Meath, Tyrone and Wexford, as well as London and India. All of the projects on the shortlist were designed by Registered Architects, based in Ireland and overseas, and were completed in 2018.

Developed in close collaboration with the principal and teachers, the building at Caherdavin provides for a two-classroom Autism Syndrome Disorder (ASD) suite with a central activities space and a sensory garden, new entrance courtyard and atrium space for whole school circulation. Inclusion, compassion and flexibility of use were all cited as key drivers in the design. The new accommodation facilitates the school and teaching staff in providing pupils with the necessary educational and social supports when starting school. By including these facilities within the mainstream school setting, children will develop social skills through participation in educational and social activities with their peers, with a view to moving to mainstream classes as they progress through their school years.

Interior view of An Ríocht, Scoil Chríost Rí, Boys National School, Caherdavin, Limerick, designed by Drake Hourigan Architects.

David Browne, RIAI President, said: “It gives me great pleasure to award Drake Hourigan Architects the 2019 RIAI Public Choice Award. The importance of good design in all of our built environment and public spaces is reflected by Public Choice being awarded to a school. Well-designed buildings can improve quality of life and social interaction, and in the case of ScoilChríost Rí, in Caherdavin can promote inclusion, compassion and flexibility. The positive impact this building will have on the learning experience of the pupils cannot be underestimated.”

Carole Pollard, FRIAI, Chair of the Jury, said: “I would like to congratulate Drake Hourigan Architects for their spectacular project; everyone involved should be immensely proud of the work they have produced. The RIAI Architecture Awards celebrate the standard of excellence in architecture across Ireland and Scoil Chríost Rí is a prime example of this. The shortlist was made up of 41 exceptional projects including residential homes, commercial spaces, schools, heritage locations and public spaces and it’s encouraging that Irish people recognise the value that Irish architects add to all aspects of the built environment, supporting Ireland’s educational, economic and social infrastructure.”

Second Place in the Public Choice went to the Cork Criminal Courthouse by OPW Architects with Wilson Architecture and Bluett O’Donoghue Architects. In third place is the office building 13-18 City Quay, Grant Thornton HQ in Dublin by Henry J Lyons Architects.

The RIAI Irish Architecture Awards are the most prestigious awards of their kind in Ireland.  They celebrate the quality of current work by RIAI Members at home and abroad and create awareness of the important role that architecture plays in delivering Ireland’s societal and economic infrastructure. The full list of RIAI Irish Architecture Awards winners will be announced this evening at an awards dinner at the Mansion House, Dublin.  The event is sponsored by Gerflor.

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