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Medico Legal Centre Dublin : Marino Building
Irish Contemporary Architecture – design by McCullough Mulvin Architects, Ireland
1 Jul 2008
Medico Legal Centre Dublin
Design: McCullough Mulvin Architects
A new City Morgue and Offices for the State Pathologist are to be located within a sensitive landscaped site at some distance from the 18th century Casino at Marino in north Dublin.
The Casino building is a tiny and delicate portland stone pavilion, once with view to the sea and the mountains, part of the demesne of Lord Charlemont, once redolent with pavilions, ponds, bonehouses and grottoes in a ‘natural’ landscape. However its parkland context has been whittled away since the late 19th century -the shoreline was filled and built over, an ungainly Victorian Gothic school for orphans sprang up just 100ft. away, an garden suburb of the twenties bisected the demesne, a nursing home, schools and a church ate away the edges more recently. Within this disturbed landscape, a Conservation Appraisal has been prepared which seeks to make a microcosm of the original context of the Casino building, as a proper setting within the last fragments of the demesne. In this context a small corner was found for a new and modern pavilion to suit a very modern and technical function : the new City Morgue and State Pathologists offices, which are located close to the Emergency Services associated with the Fire Brigade.
The new pavilion occupies a series of walled gardens which carefully enclose its most private functions, from arrival of a hearse in the technical area to the private grieving of a relative in a garden. It is a place of stillness and sadness, where the building- walls, roof and ground plane- marks with small depressions in the ground reminiscent of graves, a calm sinking back into earth for those who have died tragically, while framing a closure for those left behind. The depressions or eruptions of the ground plane are still water pools, lush planting, stone seats.
Internally, the simple plan is programmatically marked off into medical boxes of paired, rooflit autopsy rooms and ancillary functional spaces, with laboratories, offices and record holdings (forensic cases) around a courtyard. A roof landscape has been developed as a further garden of lower, hidden technical plant spaces and raised green planting in a sort of chessboard form on the stone roof, continuing rectangles of water and planting at garden level.
Medico Legal Centre Dublin images / information from McCullough Mulvin Architects 010708
Medico Legal Centre architect : McCullough Mulvin Architects, Ireland
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