Part 8 Explanatory Booklet Reduced

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Part 8 Explanatory Booklet Reduced

GRAFTON

STREET

PART 8

Explanatory Booklet April 2012

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COMHAIRLE CHATHRACH BHAILE ÁTHA CLIATH

DUBLIN CITY COUNCIL

Planning and Development Act 2000 - 2010

Planning and Development Regulations, 2001-2010 - Part 8

Applicant: Dublin City Council South East Area Office, Civic Offices,

Wood Quay, Dublin 8

Location: Grafton Street, Dublin 2

Proposal: Pursuant to the requirements of the above, notice is hereby

given of proposals to remove the existing brick paving and replace with new

stone paving for the full width of Grafton Street and for its length from face

of the building line at St Stephen’s Green North to the face of the building

line at the junction of Nassau Street and Suffolk Street. The proposals

include the removal of the existing street furniture and replacement with

new street furniture. The proposals include all necessary service, utility

and associated site works. The works will be phased such that businesses

can remain open and disruption is minimised. In accordance with the

Council Directive 92/43/ECC as amended by Council Directive 97/62/EC,

Appropriate Assessment does not apply.

Report: “Grafton Street’s a wonderland there is magic in the air”

Grafton Street is acknowledged as one of Dublin’s most significant streets.

Yet its existing brick paved surface laid in the mid 1980s has suffered

badly in recent years. It is now at the point where it is necessary for repair

crews to attend on an almost daily basis. The replacement of its existing

paving material is an imperative for the street and the city.


Considerable experience has been gained by the City Council in the

provision, maintenance and management of high quality public realm

that is under severe vehicular and pedestrian pressure in its schemes on

O’Connell Street and Henry Street/Mary Street. It is following from that

experience together with the goal of achieving universal design standards

in the executed works and acknowledging the particular distinctive

character of Grafton Street itself, while setting the parameters for the

subsequent development of other streets within the quarter, that these

proposals are presented.

Design Requirements –

• Application of principles of Universal Design

• Protection of existing under-street private cellars from vehicle

overloading

• Structurally robust low maintenance design accommodating retention

of existing vehicle loading regime along length of street

• Future maintenance by mechanised street cleaning vehicles (scale

and nature of vehicles as per existing fleet)

• Not compromising the existing maximum pedestrian capacity of street

• Give expression to Grafton Street’s unique character

• Signal design parameters for hierarchy of adjoining streets.

Design Response –

The redesign for Grafton Street offers the opportunity to continue the

high quality public realm improvement schemes carried out in O’Connell

Street and in Henry Street/Mary Street and to continue the Civic Spine

link between Parnell Square and Saint Stephen’s Green. It is proposed

to use natural-stone granite for paving as is traditional in Dublin’s streets

and to utilise a palette of stone colours which have already been used in

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the O’Connell St. and Henry St. schemes. This both reinforces the unity of

city centre high quality street paving and restricts the range of stone to be

sourced for ongoing maintenance and repair.

Although this scheme may be considered a continuum of the O’Connell

St. scheme in quality, the architectural character of the wide, straight main

street differs essentially from the narrower curved nature of Grafton Street.

While the architectural character of the streets within the Grafton Street

Quarter varies from the visual complexity and colour in Grafton Street to

the Georgian formality of Molesworth Street and the highly ornamented

brickwork of the South City Markets area, the proposals for Grafton Street

are framed in the context of a particular response to the Grafton Street

character while providing a visual and thematic link with the other streets

of the quarter.

It is an objective of the proposals for Grafton Street that the design should

have:-

• coherence i.e. the design should be logical and be consistent

• legibility i.e. the design should be visually understandable in its intent,

its elements, contrasts, direction, and expression of arrival at place

• usability i.e. be usable in accordance with the principles of Universal

Design with regard to a full spectrum of people’s abilities.

Layout

While Grafton Street is a pedestrian street for most of the day, the traffic

free environment only operates from the end of the morning goods

delivery period. The protection of underground cellars immediately in front

of many of the shopfronts requires the positioning of a range of street

furniture to prevent vehicles intruding on the cellar roofs. These elements


will mostly comprise lighting columns, waste bins and bollards. Although

the street-furniture will be contemporary and high quality in design it offers

the opportunity to give expression to the unique character of the street and

to allow the exploration of street-furniture design unique to this character.

The visually rich and complex range of shopfront styles and architectural

building elevations suggest that the paving design, in order to complement

rather than compete with this richness , should be calm and understated

in nature and so the background material proposed generally for the street

is a mid grey granite.

The design proposes a way-finding path, useful to people with a visual

impairment, of contrasting stone colour and texture, located away from

the delivery-trafficked central roadway affording an obstruction free route

along one side of the street. Nodes and the major street junctions are

given visual recognition as points of interest and pause along the route

and are paved to form a pink granite square set in a darker pink surround

to signify importance, arrival and direction change. The way-finding

path is marked at this point by a direction-change shape. Entrances to

small side-streets are marked with pink granite threshold paving and the

shopfronts are edged with a margin of pink granite sets. It is proposed to

re-state the alignment of the original footways by a subtle change of stone

colour and texture and by using substantial kerbstone edges to the central

carriageway.

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The existing geometric paving in Grafton Street (centre photograph) and the

richness and visual complexity of the building facades, design detailing and

materials.

Visual Complexity


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Given the visual complexity of the Grafton Street buildings, the design

proposes paving that is calm visually.

Calm Visually


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The existing geometric brick paving pattern has its own internal grid dimension

or rhythm unrelated to building widths, shop fronts or plot size. The design

proposes a different rhythm related to the “pause” areas on the street - the

junctions with a side street - where a decision is made to view, to enter or to

continue.

A Change of Rhythm


continuous rhythm

“pause” areas at junctions

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Universal Design is the design and composition of an environment so that it

can be accessed, understood and used to the greatest extent possible by all

people regardless of their age, size or ability. This will be particularly evident

in a surface that is level, even, not slippery and includes tactile wayfinding

and warnings.

Principles of Universal Design


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To protect the cellars of the buildings, that extend under Grafton Street, traffic

must be kept off the cellar roofs by street furniture, lights and bollards.

Vehicular Access


Ground

Floor

Level

Pedestrian

Access

Only

Cellar

Below

Ground

Extent of Vehicular Access

Pedestrian

Access

Only

Cellar

Below

Ground

Ground

Floor

Level

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The detailed design of paving sizes, jointing, junctions with different materials,

colour, texture and the careful design of manhole covers and street hardware

are essential elements and must form part of a high quality project.

Quality of Detail


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This is the first of a series of Part 8’s that will issue in accordance with the

Grafton Street Public Realm Plan. It therefore relates solely to the “spine” of

Grafton Street, that is building edge to building edge, and does not deal with

the side streets. Each side street will be the subject of their own Part 8.

Part 8 Boundary


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The traditional paving material for Dublin has been granite. The design

proposes high quality, natural granite which is functional, durable and safe

using a similar range of stone as has been used in recent upgrading schemes

in O’Connell Street and Henry Street.

New Paving


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It is proposed that the street furniture be well-designed and elegant, and both

reflect and express the unique character of Grafton Street.

Street Furniture


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It is proposed to carry out the work in a number of sequential work front areas

to allow pedestrian and vehicle movements to continue and ensure business

disruption is minimised.

Sequential Work Fronts


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Example of a possible work front area with vehicle movements following a

Traffic Management Plan and pedestrian movement maintained.

Sequential Work Fronts


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The subsequent work front area allows vehicles and pedestrians to use the

completed area and work is carried out outside the shop fronts.

Sequential Work Fronts


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Grafton Street Quarter with the proposed street improvements shown shaded

in grey and the proposed Luas BXD line shown shaded in purple.

Grafton Street Quarter


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Proposed Luas BXD line through the Grafton Street Quarter.

Luas BXD


Contact

The plans and particulars of the proposed development will be available for

inspection or purchase at a fee not exceeding the reasonable cost of making

a copy for a period of six weeks from 20 th April 2012 until 6 th June 2012 at the

offices of Dublin City Council’s Planning Department, Block 4, Ground Floor,

Civic Offices, Wood Quay, Dublin 8 Monday to Friday 9.00am to 4.30pm.

A submission or observation in relation to the proposed development, dealing

with the proper planning and sustainable development of the area in which

the development would be situated may be made in writing to the Executive

Manager, Planning Department, Dublin City Council, Block 4, Floor 3, Civic

Offices, Wood Quay, Dublin 8, before 4.30pm on 20 th June 2012.

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