Navan Civic Space
PKA were appointed as architects for Navan's Kennedy Road civic space on foot of winning a 1999 RIAI international design competition.
The competition brief was to reconfigure the town centre car park as a civic space, which would function as an everyday shopping and meeting place, as a venue for festivals and events, as well as giving the County Meath town a focus which it currently lacks.
Responding to the site's complex geometry and topography, PKA's design creates a central shared-surface paved area, separated from the busy Kennedy Road by a series of walls, ramps and steps. A tree-lined allee creates a pedestrian mall to the shopfronts along the south side of the space.
A palette of high quality materials - local limestone and granite - plus carefully considered light fittings, furniture, seating and landscape elements adds to the quality of the space.
Progressed through an eight-year planning and land acquisition process, including a successful oral hearing at an Bord Pleanala, the project was completed in May 2008, and it was highly commended in the Best Civic Space category of the 2009 RIAI awards.
The desire of some traders and council members to retain parking was a challenge throughout the design process, in terms of reconciling PKA's winning design - and the competition objective to create a civic space - with its use as a car park. Temporarily resolved by the inclusion of a line of parking along the Canon Row side, on completion of construction the town council allowed the space revert entirely to its original parking function.
Client: Navan Town Council
Reference: Joe Crockett, Town Manager