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Sharp, angular glass facets make up the central feature of the Bord Gáis Energy Theatre and Grand Canal Commercial Development in Dublin, Ireland, designed by Daniel Libeskind. Presenting itself to the public as an open, transparent meeting of the cultural and commercial purposes for the city, the project began with the 2,000 seat performing arts centre which was completed in 2010 and continues its construction with the 375,000 ft² office and retail complex open to leasing. Below is a further description given by the architects, laying out the various themes and rationales behind its conception and development.

Arch2o-Bord Gáis Energy Theatre and Grand Canal Commercial Development-Daniel Libeskind (2)

Courtesy of Daniel Libeskind – Photographer Ros Kavanagh

The 148,000-square-foot theatre is at the heart of the Grand Canal Harbour development, a movement to revitalize the docklands. The building is based on the concept of stages — the stage of the theatre itself, the stage of the piazza, and the stage of the theatre lobby above the piazza, illuminated at night. The theatre becomes the main façade of a large public piazza that has a five star hotel and residences on one side and an office building on the other. The piazza acts as a grand outdoor lobby for the theatre. With the dramatic theatre elevation as a backdrop and platforms for viewing, the piazza itself becomes a stage for civic gathering.

Arch2o-Bord Gáis Energy Theatre and Grand Canal Commercial Development-Daniel Libeskind (8)

Courtesy of Daniel Libeskind – Photographer Ros Kavanagh

With their twin facades, glazed courtyards and landscaped roofs, the two office blocks which make up the Commercial Development provide sustainable, state of the art work environments. By designing multi-story glazed atriums, the commercial buildings integrate with the adjacent retail, residential, cultural and public space components.

Courtesy of Daniel Libeskind – Photographer Ros Kavanagh

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