O’Mahony Pike and their predecessors Delany McVeigh and Pike have been working on projects in Dublin Docklands for more than three decades including the Custom House Dock competition and master-planning the Dublin Gas Company site in the 1980s. This was followed by a study for the Dublin Docks Company of the Campshires on the Liffey Quays in 1991, which highlighted a landmark tower where the Dodder joins the Liffey. The tower was initially proposed as the U2 tower and other proposals followed, ending with it’s final conclusion as the Capital Dock tower.

The Grand Canal Dock has been the focus of several OMP projects starting with the Millennium Tower at Charlotte Quay, on the spot where the Grand Canal was opened in 1796.

The next project was Hanover Quay which followed the setting up of the Dublin Docklands Development Authority. The DDDA acquired the Dublin Gas Company site and OMP were appointed following a competition to design the project. It is a predominantly 8 story residential development divided into 2 blocks with court yard gardens.

Then followed the Gasworks on Barrow Street with its iconic Victorian gasholder frame. The frame has been restored and a nine-story, glass-clad drum with an inner courtyard was inserted, which contains 210 apartments. Further residential buildings step up to nine stories with two office buildings and a supermarket at street level on the Barrow Street frontage. The offices were acquired by Google who later bought the Montevetro building opposite, which was also designed by OMP.

Montevetro is a thirteen-storey tower next to Barrow Street Station. The combined buildings are the Google Headquarters and are so well located that there are no car parking spaces provided, but hundreds for bicycles, and a swimming pool in the basement. The main office is a strong, black clad box, with bright yellow cladding highlighting each narrow vertical end.

At the opposite end of the Grand Canal Dock is the Capital Dock site. It was originally purchased by Liam Carroll. OMP did a plan for the whole site, but the only the State Street Bank building was completed before the crash. The site was then bought by Kennedy Wilson who commissioned OMP to complete the design of the site.

Two further office buildings with contrasting facades on the Liffey frontage lead to the 23 story residential tower.  This steps down to a lower residential building which overlooks the bright red Brewdog pub on the Dodder frontage next to a pocket park, awaiting the construction of the bridge to Ringsend. The ground floor of the residential buildings include a restaurant, a cafe/bar and a larger supermarket to provide a lively frontage to the waterfront. The first floor contains a range of community facilities for the residents including a gym, work places, a cinema and a large lounge and restaurant. A generous public square sits between the Brewdog and two further buildings one office and one residential.

James Pike
Director, O’Mahony Pike Architects