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Miesian Plaza, Dublin

Transforming an iconic 1960s design into a sustainable modern office space

Originally designed by Dr. Ronald Tallon of Scott Tallon Walker Architects, the recently transformed Miesian Plaza, former high-end corporate headquarters of Bank of Ireland, breathes new life into Lower Baggot Street in Dublin City Centre.

Incorporating an attractive public realm, the rejuvenated Miesian style development provides space for pedestrians alongside a place for people to gather and spend time outdoors, encouraging urban and social inclusion. 

With real estate developer Remley Unlimited Company’s ambitious and forward-thinking goals in mind, our priority was to sustainably refurbish this development, whilst maintaining the architectural integrity.

Notable energy efficient solutions feature throughout the design, with the development becoming one of the few listed buildings in Ireland to achieve Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Platinum v4 certification, the highest level of the LEED green building rating system.

Arup provided civil, structural, mechanical, electrical and façade engineering, vertical transportation, project supervisor for the design process (PSDP) and sustainability advisory services.

Project Summary

1st LEED Platinum v4 Certification in Ireland

75%of demolition materials recycled

40%energy saving

Sustainable design optimises building energy performance

Tremendous efforts were made to minimise energy usage and optimise energy performance across all areas of the building design.

The client’s team chose to dramatically upgrade the façade energy performance. While not mandatory due to the development’s listed status, this proved to be the most effective energy conservation method employed. New high-performance glass and motorised internal solar control blinds control solar gain while maximising occupant comfort.

Aerial view of Miesian Plaza showing green roofs Aerial view of Miesian Plaza showing green roofs
Green roofs minimise the heat-island effect, helping to reduce energy consumption while encouraging biodiversity in the city. © Remley Unlimited Company

Internally, sustainable MEP system design components such as hybrid cooling and thermal energy storage (TES), low energy LED light technology – which also reduces light pollution at night – daylight sensors and controls such as presence and absence detectors further enhance the development’s energy efficiency.

Low-flow indoor water fixtures fitted with leak detection and coupled with a rainwater reclamation strategy reduce overall water consumption and additional insulation reduces HVAC demands.

New double glazed bronzed-tinted glass, in-keeping with the original aesthetic, was installed. © Donal Murphy Photography

Careful restoration of protected features

The biggest impact on the 29,000m2 redevelopment was the upgrade of the existing bronze curtain wall on all three blocks.

Identified as elements of outstanding architectural merit by Dublin City Council, refurbishment of the protected façade and plaza presented a significant challenge.

To restore the integrity of the deteriorating building fabric without compromising its aesthetic and historic quality, the team worked cohesively to design a complete upgrade involving the removal, refurbishment and reinstallation of the existing façade.

Retrofit ensures a resilient future

Inside each building, major structural interventions were undertaken to meet modern standards. With flexibility and future proofing in mind, an open plan layout with services such as elevators and WC facilities clustered centrally minimises energy consumption while maximising the net-lettable space. This also allows for a spacious reception area and floor-to-ceiling glazing for natural daylighting and clear views of Dublin City.

This highly specified office complex, an exemplar of quality and character, demonstrates that, with a sensitive circular approach, buildings heading for possible demolition can be given a new lease of life. Sustainability was prioritised during construction, with over 75% of waste and demolition from the works recycled and diverted from landfill. In maintaining the overarching historic character throughout the retrofit, Miesian Plaza now lies as an outstanding benchmark for the restoration of protected buildings, both nationally and worldwide.

In 2020, Miesian Plaza was awarded the Association of Consulting Engineers of Ireland (ACEI) Climate Change Adaptation Award.

Collaboration and a focus on achieving our client’s sustainability goals were at the heart of sensitively restoring Miesian Plaza to its former glory. ” Picture of Sean Barrett Sean Barrett Associate Director