Study to be carried out into plans for €19m Liberties Creative Campus

A feasibility study is to be carried out into exciting plans for a new ‘creative campus’ in the Liberties.

Three sites owned by Dublin City Council have been identified for the €19 million project – Bridgefoot St, and at 8 and 9 Merchants Quay.

The ‘creative campus’ is expected to be a workspace for artists across a broad range of artforms. The feasibility study will assess how the three identified sites can be developed and regenerated into the ambitious plans.

The proposals are part of an Urban Regeneration and Development Fund (URDF) regeneration project that aims to deliver new workspace for artists within the city.

Creating a €11 million campus on Bridgefoot St could result in an economic benefit to the area of around €30 million over ten years, and an economic impact of over €2million each year. Meanwhile, the sites on 8 and 9 Merchants Quay may receive an investment of up to €8 million.

The vision of the project is to jointly develop the sites and properties, and to partner with existing organisations in Dublin 8 to form a campus for the arts, that will provide community facilities and public spaces as well.

“This is an early feasibility study funded by the URDF, but at its heart is a compact regeneration project focused on the Liberties area of the city,” said Richard Shakespeare, Assistant Chief Executive with Dublin City Council.

“It could deliver a vibrant culture-led renewal built on delivering new workspace accommodation for the arts sector, alongside community assets that benefit the local area and wider public, and leveraging existing links and arts infrastructure in the area. If feasible Dublin City Council will be promoting the Liberties Creative Campus for further URDF funding to deliver on these plans.”

“Earlier this year we undertook research, reaching out to the sector to help us establish principles for any new development,” said Ray Yeates from Dublin City Council’s Arts Office.

“We focused on building and space design, but also addressing wider issues such as artform mix, support services, public outreach and interactions, and governance models. Our research shows that almost 41% of artists who responded were currently seeking workspace, with no current alternatives and a further 10% working from home.”

Dublin City Council say they have engaged a team of experts to look at cultural-led urban regeneration models in Ireland and across Europe, and hope the sector will provide constructive involvement and urge the wider community to get involved by participating in this upcoming round of consultation.

Dublin City Council will begin consultation with the public, artists and local communities in late November, through a series of online workshops and online consultation platform, www.artistworkspaces.ie.

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