This afternoon.

Pearse House (top), Pearse Street, Dublin 2 and Markievicz House, Townsend Street, Dublin 2.

Two listed Dublin apartment blocks by architect Herbert Simms face demolition…

The council’s housing committee has voted to start the process of “delisting” Pearse House and Markievicz House so that the dilapidated flats can be demolished and replaced with “decent modern accommodation”.

Residents of the two complexes on Townsend Street in the south-east inner-city have long campaigned for the redevelopment of their blocks and recently protested outside the council’s officers over a rat infestation.

Attempts to refurbish flat blocks of a similar age had proved more costly than building anew, Chris Andrews [Sinn Féin Councillor] said.

Dublin city centre flats complexes to be demolished to allow for ‘decent modern accommodation’ (Irish Times)


Edward writes:

These are beautiful buildlngs …by a genuine hero of Dublin housing …they are some of the finest in the city…. I would like to see evidence that refurbishment is not cost effective…


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52 thoughts on “Delisted

    1. Brother Barnabas

      what do you not believe, cian?

      (as an aside: herbert sims is buried in deansgrange cemetery – he committed suicide by jumping in front of a train just outside dun laoghaire station. he left a note citing excessive pressure and workload)

  1. Vanessa off the Telly

    Well I don’t care how much they cost to refurb
    they should spend it
    DCC have the spondoulies to spend on these buildings anyway

    1. rotide

      Aren’t you an accountant?

      What’s with saying idiotic things like ‘i dont care how much it costs, they should do it’

      1. Termagant

        There’s nothing wrong with spending money when you get something of value and preserving the city’s history is something of value

          1. Termagant

            How much more can retrofit be than the cost of tearing down the existing building and putting up a new one? As well as figuring out where to rehouse whoever’s currently living there while you build the new structure.

      2. Vanessa off the Telly

        Investment in publically ownes assets that can never be replaced Rotide

        You know
        One of the most important things I learned from my time in the service is that not everything should be a financial decision

        Think about that for a bit lads

        1. Cian

          It depends. If DCC have a fixed budget for housing I’d hope that they are making prudent financial decisions.
          If their choice was
          a) spend (say) €20million to refurbish this place and house 200 people + keep a historic building
          b) spend (say) €20million to knock this and rebuild from scratch and house 400 people

          then pass me a sledgehammer!

        2. rotide

          ” not everything should be a financial decision”

          Agreed, just as not everything old needs to be kept. This is the second time today that there’s been people actively moaning about new housing being built.

          I give up.

    2. Worlds Biggest Ranter

      “I would like to see evidence that refurbishment is not cost effective”

      Every single complex that’s been refurbed in the past has been inundated with claims form the residents for anything from disturbances to dust inhalation and so on. They’re the hidden numbers you never hear about in the costs for these building works. It’s just not worth the hassle. Move Em out, build new complexes, avoid scroats piggy backing the tax payer cause their jacket got stained or something.

  2. rotide

    I spent a good portion of my life around these buildings and “These are beautiful buildlngs” could only have been said by someone with a guide dog at their side.

  3. Rob_G

    Those buildings are kips – did anyone read the quotes from Chris Andrews in the article? Crumbling walls, toilets overflowing with sewage (bleurghh!) – they should be bulldozed and replaced with 10 or 12 stories of LA housing, mixed development – whichever.

  4. Scundered

    These kind of dwellings should be built well outside the city centre, and free up space for people who work.

    1. Jimi

      Because all people in council houses are unemployed! no working poor at all! and the way we’ll solve their unemployment is by moving them away from anywhere they could realistically find a job to places with no transport and no infrastructure!

      And when anyone points out this is stupid we’ll shout about whats its like to be poor, and struggling in a city that underpays entry level jobs, and has one of the worst costs of living for no explicable reason, despite the fact that we live in the suburbs and drive to work, because public transport is for poor people.

      Great Idea!

      1. Scundered

        So you think these buildings are filled with working professionals? Grand.

        The reality is such structures around city centre are a haven for the long term unemployed and drug crime. Do you feel that’s not true at all? Harsh words but the truth.

      2. Rob_G

        Between the working professionals commuting in from Portarlington or Naas and the unemployed people living smack bang in the city centre, or the working people living in D2 and the unemployed people living in outside the city, I would choose the latter.

        We expect working people, who pay close to half their salaries in taxes, and perhaps another €1k p/m on creche fees, to have to make this journey 10 times per week; I don’t think that it is entirely unreasonable to oblige people living for free to make this journey every week or so for the occasional interview.

        Anyhow, if we knocked these buildings and replaced them with something a good deal taller, there would be way more apartments, both for the workers and the dole-heads.

    2. Janet, I ate my avatar

      Ghettos in the suburbs ? What makes you think no one works there ?
      That worked out well for Paris for example.
      ( sarcasm font )

  5. Starina

    Refurbishment would be like gutting a Trabant and filling it with BMW parts. Just rebuild. It’s ugly, anyway.

  6. Spaghetti Hoop

    I worked on a planning project years ago at Pearse House. The exterior of the building with its curves and symmetry was interesting, and the lawn cut neatly around the perimeter with shrubs. Then you go in……complete hell-hole: tyres burning, lads sitting up on old cars watching you, the obligatory sofa in the middle, kids running round like animals, oul wans roaring at them from balconies, syringes on the steps, ‘pushers out’ graffiti, boarded up front doors, rotting rubbish everywhere, etc.They also had an out-of-control vermin problem. Yet the people I spoke to, mainly the matriarchs, were warm, kind, polite. Just plunged deep in poverty all of their lives – not just a temporary blip in the finances – twas all they knew.

    1. Paul Moloney

      “They also had an out-of-control vermin problem.”

      So does Marmion Court, which is only relatively new and considerably more ugly than Markievicz House.

      Our family lived there for almost 70 years and I don’t remember any rat problem, so there’s nothing innate about the building to cause it. Elsewhere, residents complain it’s local building works which are causing the issue :


    2. SOQ

      tyres burning, lads sitting up on old cars watching you, the obligatory sofa in the middle, kids running round like animals, oul wans roaring at them from balconies, syringes on the steps, ‘pushers out’ graffiti, boarded up front doors, rotting rubbish everywhere, etc

      That has nothing to do with the buildings Spaghetti and a lot to do with SOME of the people who lived there. I find it hard to believe it is cheaper to knock and rebuild. Look what they done to Fatima Mansion? If that developer thought it was cheaper to knock, he would have done.

      1. SOQ

        Just checked Wiki re: Fatima Mansions.

        All existing apartment blocks were demolished to make way for 600 accommodation units, consisting of social, affordable and private housing along with community, business and leisure facilities at a cost of €200 million

        News to me, and most of Dublin 8 I expect.The demolished bit I mean.

  7. RuilleBuille

    The interiors of the flats are in an appalling state and should be demolished.

    My worry is that the public funded re-building will be awful as the Charlemount St tenants have found out.

  8. Zaccone

    The interiors are horrendous. I can totally believe it would cost more to refurbish these than knock and rebuild them.

    It would also make no sense to keep them when its possible to build newer, more energy efficient, and most importantly larger structures on the same site. Its prime center city real estate. Build some 8 story apartment blocks and help alleviate the housing crisis.

    1. SOQ

      larger structures = pack em in like sardines. Inchicore mark II so. And in twenty years when Mountjoy gets a new generation of revolving ‘guests’, we can all wring our hands and talk to each other about personal responsibility on the internet.

    2. George

      They are listed for a reason. Most of the buildings built today are crap and will never be listed. These buildings need to be preserved.

    1. SOQ

      Yes. Stoneybatter in a house share with 2 militant vegans and a hairy bearded recluse who never speaks OR a low ceiling basement bedsit on NCR below a couple of trainees from Cork who do what they want… because they joined the guards

      Your point is caller?

        1. SOQ

          Most that people who work in the social media companies do not make anywhere near the salaries you think they do. Gross fifty grand won’t go very far when you are throwing out half of it on a flat.

    1. Cian

      There aven’t enough FG councillors to do anything in Dublin County council.
      It is SF led.

      But don’t let facts interfere with your ideology.

      1. Rob_G

        If he actually clicked the link, he would read extensive quotes from an SF councillor arguing why they be knocked. But easier for dav to just fall back on his dumb soundbite than to to actually inform himself on how the world works, even in the most minimal way.

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