Grimshaw has won a publicly tendered contract for a new £2 billion tram line in north Dublin
The London practice defeated an undisclosed shortlist of four rival teams to win the estimated £420,000 contract backed by Transport Infrastructure Ireland, reported the Irish Independent.
Grimshaw will draw up conceptual designs for the 17km route, dubbed New Metro North (NMN), connecting Dublin’s city centre to the airport and the estuary in Swords.
The £2 billion project will deliver 14 stations, including six underground stops. The chosen team will create an architectural identity and ‘distinct character’ for the route, along with concept designs for its stations and a strategy for bridges, tunnels, landscaping and public realm.
The tram line was first proposed in 2001 and originally scheduled to open in 2014, but was put on hold in 2011 following the financial crash, which froze many projects in the country.
Revived in a revised form last year, the line will link Dublin’s northern suburbs to the city centre via the international airport, with several raised and subterranean sections. It is scheduled to start on site in 2021 and open to passengers in 2026, with an expected 30 million passengers a year,
The journey time from O’Connell Street in central Dublin to the airport will be just 19 minutes. The route will feature 60m-long trams – 50 per cent longer than those used on the city’s existing LUAS line (pictured).
As part of the commission, Grimshaw will develop an architectural strategy demonstrating how NMN’s infrastructure will integrate into Dublin’s surroundings. Architectural concepts for the city centre and suburban stations will also be drawn up, along with conceptual studies for key at-grade and elevated sections of the proposed route.