The pace of development around Newmarket off St Luke’s Avenue since 2015 has been dramatically reshaping this corner of Dublin. From former industrial units and vacant sites to new commercial uses, residential, student housing schemes, hotels and visitor attractions – its an area in complete transition.
Our first overview back in 2017 highlighted the new distilleries, the then-coming Aloft Hotel, new student housing schemes on Mill Street, and the restoration of formerly-ruined historic buildings such as 10 Mill Street and the old St Luke’s Church. New parks were being developed at Cork Street (Weaver Park) and St Luke’s Avenue (St Luke’s Park), while plans were being made for a major public realm investment in the square, creating a largely pedestrianised market and events space.
Despite the difficulties of the past few months, work is now beginning or resuming on a whole new series of sites. Other developments are back to the planning process. With all this happening, its worth taking a look at the changing face of Newmarket.
The Eight Building – one of the three elements of the so-called ‘Newmarket Partnership’ scheme, the Eight Building is a new office and retal building on Mill Lane. When completed next year, the building will include 7,500sqm of Grade A office space as well as a ground floor market hall and artists studios. The building is designed by Reddy Architecture & Urbanism.
11-12 Newmarket – planning permission was granted to Newmarket Partnership for this new office premises to sit alongside the Teeling Distillery and to include a micro-brewery and cafe spilling out onto Newmarket. The site is now for sale.
Ardee Point – UK-based student accommodation provider Nido will operate this new 368 bedroom facility when it completes in 2022. Ardee Point occupies much of the site of the former Watkins brewery between Brabazon Place and Ardee Street. A number of heritage features on the site, including a brick tower and a cut stone warehouse onto Newmarket are being retained, conserved and adapted to new uses as part of the scheme. Designed by Henry J Lyons Architects, the development also allows for pedestrian permeability between Newmarket and St Luke’s Avenue with high quality landscaped spaces. Initial site works have now commenced on this project including demolition, site clearance and archaeological investigations.
10 Ardee Street – the historic Brewers’ House is one of the most significant historic residences in The Liberties. The impressive 5-bay house once formed the main entrance to the former Watkins brewery. Two adjoining houses were largely destroyed by road widening to create St Luke’s Avenue in the 1980s exposing the north gable of No 10. Permission has now been granted for a restoration of the house to create new apartments and small office spaces.
Sweeney’s Corner – permission was granted last year for the 235-bedroom student housing scheme together with 37 build to rent apartments for this site at Mill Street and Sweeney’s Terrace. The site forms the final element of the largescale redevelopment of Mill Street since 2016 transforming wasteland into a new hotel, student accommodation centres, offices and apartments. Designed by Reddy Architecure & Urbanism, the student accommodation element of the scheme will be operated by GSA Uninest (which operates adjoining New Mill and Tannery), while the apartments will be let on the market. A cafe is also proposed. A landscaped walkway and gardens will link Mill Street with the small ‘pond’ area to the south where the historic River Poddle briefly makes an appearance, however unfortunately the walkway will not have public access.
Premier Inn at Newmarket – a hotel was proposed as part of the 2017 planning permission sought for the former IDA Business Centre/Blenders factory – the largest element of the ‘Newmarket Partnership’ scheme. The site’s new owners have now submitted a revised application for a new 151-bedroom hotel, expected to be operated by Premier Inn, for the west portion of the site. The new hotel, which will include a bar, restaurant, a cafe and public areas, also includes a connecting walkway to St Luke’s Avenue. The development is currently being considered by Dublin City Council.
Newmarket Square – forming the remainder of the IDA site, ‘Newmarket Square’ is a proposed 413 unit build to rent aapartment scheme (29,570sq.m on a site of c.0.66ha) comprising comprising 203no. studios, 136no. one bedroom units, 72no. 2 bedroom units and 2no. 3 bedroom units, as well as shops, a café, artist studios, a courtyard and new street connecting Newmarket and St Luke’s Avenue. The development also proposed 50 underground parking spaces. The application is now being considered by An Bord Pleanála under its Strategic Housing Development process. Public submissions can be made until 15th June 2020. The full details of the development proposal can be found at: https://newmarketsquareshd.ie/
The former IDA Business Centre has now been largely demolished ahead of its redevelopment, exposing the huge site on the northside of Newmarket.
Cork Street residential – Dublin City Council is itself developing two adjacent sites at nearby Weaver Park for 55no. social housing apartments. The scheme is designed by Levitt Bernstein Architects and ABK Architects for Dublin City Council Housing Department. The development will provide 55 homes arranged in two blocks of apartments with associated communal courtyards, and a small commercial space. These new homes will be of the highest quality, all with private amenity space, and will provide much needed additional housing in The Liberties. Work started in early spring and will continue with the new housing completed in late 2021/early 2022.