steven holl wins university college dublin's future campus competition

steven holl wins university college dublin's future campus competition

steven holl architects (SHA) has won an international contest to design university college dublin’s future campus. the winning design held off competition from a strong shortlist, which also included DS+R, john ronan architects, o’donnell + tuomey, studio libeskind, and UNStudio. the brief asked the teams to to draw up plans for a ‘highly-visible and welcoming entrance precinct’, as well as a concept design for a new 8,000 square meter building — known as the ‘centre for creative design’.

steven holl university college dublin
all images © steven holl architects, courtesy of malcolm reading



SHA’s masterplan features seven new quadrangles designed around the site’s historic features and woodland. parallel to the campus’ original spine, a new pedestrian thoroughfare is lined with weather canopies that double as solar connectors — forming the infrastructure of an energy network. cafés and social spaces are located along paths for informal gathering, while landscape spaces are animated by water-retention ponds, rain- and wind-protected seating areas and preserved trees.

steven holl university college dublin
a reflecting pool is situated outside the main building



the ‘centre for creative design’, the focal point of the plan, features prismatic forms inspired by the geology of the giant’s causeway. angled at 23 degrees, two vertical structures bring light inside the building, while the auditorium echoes the shape of UCD’s dodecahedral 1972 water tower. an internal ‘circuit of social connection’ allows students, faculty and visitors to unobtrusively observe educational spaces.

steven holl university college dublin
natural light is funneled inside the structure



holl’s studio was supported by dublin-based kavanagh tuite architects, US analysts brightspot strategy, structural engineers arup, landscape architects and urban designers harrisonstevens, and climate engineers transsolar. see designboom’s previous coverage of the competition here, including the five other proposals.

steven holl university college dublin
the auditorium echoes the shape of UCD’s dodecahedral 1972 water tower

steven holl university college dublin
the masterplan features seven new quadrangles

steven holl university college dublin
the scheme respects the site’s historic features and woodland

    have something to add? share your thoughts in our comments section below.
    all comments are reviewed for the purposes of moderation before publishing.

    comments policy
    LOG IN
    designboom's comment policy guidelines
    generally speaking, if we publish something, it's because we're genuinely interested in the subject. we hope you'll share this interest and if you know even more about it, please share! our goal in the discussion threads is to have good conversation and we prefer constructive opinions. we and our readers have fun with entertaining ones. designboom welcomes alerts about typos, incorrect names, and the like.
    the correction is at the discretion of the post editor and may not happen immediately.

    what if you disagree with what we or another commenter has to say?
    let's hear it! but please understand that offensive, inappropriate, or just plain annoying comments may be deleted or shortened.

    - please do not make racist, sexist, anti-semitic, homophobic or otherwise offensive comments.
    - please don't personally insult the writers or your fellow commenters.
    - please avoid using offensive words, replacing a few letters with asterisks is not a valid workaround.
    - please don't include your website or e-mail address in your comments for the purpose of self-promotion.
    - please respect jury verdicts and do not discuss offensively on the competition results
    (there is only one fist prize, and designboom usually asks renown professionals to help us to promote talent.
    in addition to the awarded designs, we do feel that almost all deserve our attention, that is why we publish
    the best 100-200 entries too.)

    a link is allowed in comments as long as they add value in the form of information, images, humor, etc. (links to the front page of your personal blog or website are not okay). unwelcome links (to commercial products or services of others, offensive material etc. ) will be redacted. and, ... yes, spam gets banned. no, we do not post fake comments.


    a diverse digital database that acts as a valuable guide in gaining insight and information about a product directly from the manufacturer, and serves as a rich reference point in developing a project or scheme.

    architecture news

    keep up with our daily and weekly stories
    504,062 subscribers
    - see sample
    - see sample
    designboom magazine