The Ark, Temple Bar, Dublin 2
Group 91 Architects-Shane O’Toole and Michael Kelly

Client: Temple Bar Properties Ltd.

Architects: Group 91 Architects – Shane O’Toole and Michael Kelly

Position:Joint Project Architect from Inception to Completion
Project Duration: 1992-1995
Building Area: 1500m²

The project was one of the key cultural projects promoted by Temple Bar Properties Ltd. to secure the urban renewal of Temple Bar as the cultural quarter for Dublin. The restricted site comprised a former 18th century Presbyterian Meeting House which had last been used as a printing works. The retention and conservation of the very fine facade to Eustace Street and the integration of this façade within the proposed design, the creation of a performance space which would open and become the stage to the proposed Meeting House Square at the rear of the site and the provision of sufficient accommodation on a restricted site to sustain the anticipated programming were the key issues to be addressed.


TThe completed building includes an entrance hall, a performance space, changing rooms, set storage/workshop, a childrens’ dining space, an exhibition space, offices, toilets and a rooftop artstudio and terrace. The structure consists of a concrete frame finished externally with brickwork and patinated copper. The 18th century elevation was stripped of its sand and cement render, the brickwork was repaired and tuck pointed and the stonework was repaired and reinstated.



RIAI Award 1996
AAI Downes Medal 1996
Plan Building of the Year 1996
RIBA European Architecture Award 1997
Mies van der Rohe European Architecture Award Nomination 1997

  • Cork Institute of Technology Tourism & Catering Studies
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  • Cork Institute of Technology Tourism & Catering Studies
  • Cork Institute of Technology Tourism & Catering Studies
  • Cork Institute of Technology Tourism & Catering Studies