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Ian Ritchie wins €6m Dublin bridge contest

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Ian Ritchie Architects has won an international contest to design a €6 million commemorative bridge at the Irish National War Memorial Gardens in Dublin

The London practice – working with German engineer Schlaich Bergermann Partner – was chosen from more than 60 entries to the contest, organised by the Royal Institute of the Architects of Ireland (RIAI).

The judging panel, which included former RIBA president Angela Brady, praised Ian Ritchie Architects’ proposal as ‘a simple and elegant way of stepping from one side of the Liffey to the other. A slender blade of stainless-steel leaps from the reeds and rushes to cross over the river.’

The studio will receive a prize of €15,000 for its winning entry. The award comes 16 years after the firm completed Dublin’s €4 million Spire monument on the site of the city’s former Nelson’s Pillar.

RIAI chief executive Kathryn Meghen said: ‘This bridge will be an iconic structure in a much-loved memorial space; it will complete the great vision of Sir Edwin Lutyens and will be there for Dubliners and others to enjoy for many years.

‘I would like to commend all of the architects who submitted designs. Architectural competitions are a demonstration of the profession’s commitment to innovate and deliver new solutions for the public good.’

Dublin City Council assistant chief executive Richard Shakespeare commented: ‘Dublin City Council welcomes the design and we are looking forward to working closely with the Office of Public Works to seeing the project to successful fruition.’

A second prize of €7,500 was awarded to Weston Williamson + Partners, while a third prize of €5,000 went to Ireland’s Niall Montgomery + Partners. Commendations were awarded to Seán Harrington Architects and Denmark’s Bystrup Arkitekter & Designere.

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