Curated Decay: Interventions to Stabilize Derelict Structures

The thesis project is centered around the illustrious Iveagh Markets located in the Liberties. The owners of this remarkable site have long held a deep reverence for its structure, perhaps even to the point of being overly cautious about making any alterations. However, the project aims to strike a balance between preservation and revitalization by exploring the concept of “stabilizing” derelict structures. We delve into the realm of architectural interventions that not only introduce new materials and spatial elements but also pay homage to the layers of time and the previous inhabitants who have left their mark on this cherished space. Our approach can be likened to that of a skilled gardener tending to a garden, infused with meticulous care and thoughtful consideration. 

At the heart of our project lies the fundamental goal of rejuvenating derelict structures by envisioning alternative methods to “stabilize” them. The excavation of the ground floor slab of the market exposed ruins from 17th-century Dublin but also compromised the structural integrity of the columns holding up the balcony and roof structure. Over the next 23 years, rain pours down through the ceiling, and plants grow wild reaching out towards the sun. The scaffolding structure proposed integrates itself to provide structural support and also a spatial function. It rethinks how the former dry market hall can be used as a “Chameleon” Space which changes its function based on how platforms can be installed on the scaffolding structures and bamboo blinds can control access and light.

Remaining faithful to this guiding principle, we carefully select materials that are both easy to install and maintain. By doing so, we ensure the longevity of our interventions while harmoniously integrating them within the existing fabric of the building. Our comprehensive study encompasses various aspects such as structure and function, allowing us to propose interventions that enhance the site’s overall integrity. Through this project, we aspire to honor the essence of the Iveagh Markets while breathing new life into its dormant spaces.