The Watchtower
The Point Village takes its name from the Point Theatre (now the O2), Dublin’s largest indoor arena, which occupies a 19th century train terminus on the site. The 3.5 hectare site is the most eastern section of Dublin Docklands, situated on the River Liffey, between the city and the sea. The aim of the development is to provide much needed services for the growing local community and attract visitors through the creation of a vibrant mixed-use development that forms an integral part of the city of Dublin. The scheme is designed around a major new civic space, Point Square, which is bounded by the shopping and leisure complex, the O2, and the landmark 130metre high tower. The Watchtower, designed as a disaggregated form, is intended to provide a slender and elegant aspect to Point Square. It will match a proposed U2 Tower on the opposite quay across the River Liffey, creating a maritime gateway where Dublin city meets the sea. The site is on a public transport hub and is served by a river ferry and a quality bus corridor. The recently extended Dublin tram system (the LUAS) has its terminus in Point Square. The 130 metre high tower dominates the square on the axis of Mayor Street, Dublin’s North Docklands principle artery. The tower contains 150 luxury apartments designed to give stunning views of the city and Dublin Bay. The Tower is clad in Titanium, Portland stone and a shimmering veil of glass louvers. A sheer, double-skin, glazed wall allows the creation of generous winter gardens for each apartment with stunning views of the city and Dublin Bay. The apartments are naturally ventilated, and benefit from a sophisticated level of control over noise and solar gain. The top of the tower is designed as a place that will be accessible to the public. Four glass lanterns of varying heights enclose heavily landscaped ‘sky gardens’ and contain an arrangement of restaurants, bars and viewing decks. A glass, panoramic, double-decker lift, brings the public from the ground floor foyer to the rooftop viewing decks. Visible from the Square and beyond it will provide a dramatic spectacle for both passengers and the city. The sky gardens, the winter gardens of the apartments, and the public spaces at the base of the tower are clad in highly transparent low E coated class to create a sense of lightness, while visually linking the top and bottom of the tower together and allowing the apartment elements to read differently. To clearly express the apartments they are given their own identity with green glass fritted louvers that float in front of the façade. The louvers not only control the heat gain and add privacy to the internal environment, but also add vibrancy and sparkle to the form of the tower Flush with pavement level a band of glazed roof lights forms a skirt around the base of the tower and brings natural light to the activities below Point Square as well as creating a visual connection between the public square and the interior. A glass waveform canopy creates a covered space on the axis of the tower entrance foyer and mediates between the human scale and the scale of a landmark tower.


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