heneghan peng architects

National Gallery of Ireland, Historic Wings Refurbishment | Dublin

Dublin, Ireland

The National Gallery of Ireland houses the National Collection of European and Irish Fine Art and has evolved over 150 years through a number of significant alterations and expansions. The refurbishment of the historic wings is part of an overall master plan that aims to develop a coherent and accessible circulation system through the various layers of the Gallery.

The Gallery is located in the heart of Georgian Dublin, on Merrion Square beside the Parliament (Dáil Éireann) and adjacent to the Natural History Museum, National Library, National Museum and Trinity College.

By opening up forgotten windows, reimagining a lightwell as a courtyard, the Gallery has been opened up and allowed to breathe again. New lift cores and stairs create universal access throughout with attention being paid to lighting levels, visual contrast cues, materials, audio aids, fire escape & safety systems.

A major element of the work was to devise a strategy to implement environmental control throughout the Gallery. In order to minimise the extent of service runs in the listed buildings, an energy centre has been placed under the garden of the Gallery’s Merrion Square entrance removing most of the major systems from the building. Services installations are threaded under and within the existing fabric, with minimal visual impact. The Gallery remained open during the construction period requiring close co-ordination between the construction team and Gallery operations.

Fact sheet


The Office of Public Works


Dublin, IE




Phases 1, 2 & 3 complete


Project Managers

Office of Public Works

Conservation Architect

Blackwood Associates

Building Services


Structures and Civil

Punch Consulting Engineers



Facade Engineering

T/E/S/S Atelier D’Ingénierie

Specialist Lighting

Bartenbach Lichtlabor

Fire Safety Design

FLN Consulting Engineers



heneghan peng architects
14–16 Lord Edward Street, Floor 2
Dublin D02 YC63, Ireland

Tel +353 (0)1 633 9000
Fax +353 1 633 9010



Potsdamer Strasse 98a, 4. OG
10785 Berlin

Tel +49 30 20 89 88 750
Fax +49 30 20 89 88 759