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  • Competition Win

International Competition Win for Shay Cleary Architects in 'Town Centre Living' 2023.

We are thrilled to share news that Shay Cleary Architects have been declared the winners of the 'Town Centre Living' Competition for the Station road site in Kildare Town.

The ‘Town Centre Living’ competitions, which launched on 27 January 2023, aimed to encourage innovative designs from architectural firms for social housing within town centres and progress the Government’s Town Centre First policy objectives of compact growth and town-centre revitalisation, by way of real showcase projects which will provide almost 100 new social housing homes.

The competitions attracted 114 entries from architectural practices in Ireland and internationally. All four competitions were adjudicated anonymously by four separate juries.

Our project, ‘An Thriantán’ proposes to provide a defined place of real character, intrinsically linked to the urban form of Kildare Town. It will provide high-quality housing in an urban form, entirely own door accessed, centred around a new community garden at the heart of the development. This proposed space resonates with the historic Market Square in Kildare Town at a smaller scale, echoing the form and urban presence of that particular place. The 18th century Market Square is a key reference point in the urban fabric of Kildare Town and as such is referenced in the proposed name of the scheme, An Thriantán (The Triangle).”

Jury Citation (extract): “This will be an exceptional housing scheme - an exemplar project for ‘Town Centre First’ living. The jury commends this innovative housing scheme for its convincing urban strategy and the design quality of the individual units. The triangular arrangement of the scheme is appropriate in morphology and scale to Kildare town, creating a housing scheme of notable character.”

Commenting on the announcement, Minister Darragh O’Brien TD said: “I am delighted to be here at the RIAI to announce the four winning design projects from this year’s ‘Town Centre Living’ competitions. The ‘Town Centre Living’ competitions operate in line with the Government’s Town Centre First policy that aims to tackle vacancy, combat dereliction, and breathe new life into our town centres. This year, we see the importance of excellence in social housing design more than ever before and I am delighted to share with you the innovative design solutions presented by the four competition winners today as we work collaboratively to build sustainable communities in our town centres.”

We add our thanks to the Royal Institute of the Architects of Ireland, The Minister for Housing, Local Government and Heritage, Darragh O’Brien TD, the Jury and local representatives and our congratulations to the shortlisted and prizewinning architectural practices.


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