University of Dublin Trinity College is seeking an architect to create a new visitor centre inside ABK’s iconic Berkeley Library
The winning team will draw up plans for a 2,000m² visitor centre, shop and temporary exhibition space inside the original competition-winning 1967 structure.
Planned to complete in 2020, the project will provide a new hub for the one million people who visit the university’s 47 hectare College Green campus every year.
Founded in 1592, Trinity College sits opposite the former Irish Houses of Parliament and is the oldest university in the country.
Historic buildings on the site include the Thomas Burgh-designed 1732 Old Library where the famous Book of Kells is kept.
The university’s existing Book of Kells exhibition ‘Turning Darkness into Light’ opened in 1998 and was designed for 250,000 annual visitors but currently receives around 750,000 every year.
A replacement ‘Reimagined Treasures’ exhibition is now being delivered inside the Old Library and the appointed team will be expected to renovate areas vacated by the old installation.
The team will also draw up plans for a new visitor facility on the lower ground floor of the Berkeley Library inside the building’s ‘Podium’ forecourt.
A new entrance to the below-ground facility and connection to the Old Library may also be included.
According to the brief: ‘The primary aim is to create an inspirational, imaginative, enlarged exhibition, along with a greatly improved visitor experience in terms of access, shop, and facilities in the Podium of the 50 year old Berkeley Library.
‘An aspirational aim is to reprise the aesthetic glory of the ground floor of the Old Library, by opening views from square to square through the colonnades.’
Peter Ahrends, Richard Burton and Paul Koralek formed Ahrends Burton Koralek (ABK) after winning a competition for the building in 1960.
The high-profile firm also completed an Arts Building for the university in 1979 and a further extension in 2002.
Up to five teams will be shortlisted for the £700,000 contract to provide ‘single point design team services’ for the project.
How to apply
View the contract notice for more information
Estates & Facilities
The University of Dublin Trinity College
Tel: +353 18964100