Keith Williams Architects design given go ahead
Keith Williams Architects has obtained Planning Consent (Part 8) for a new art gallery situated on the banks of the River Shannon in Athlone, Co. Westmeath, Ireland.
The project is situated on a spectacular site adjacent to Athlone Bridge and the neo-Baroque Church of St Peter and St Paul (1932-1939). Williams’ designs involve the remodelling of an existing onetime temperance movement building, the Father Matthew Hall (1897) as a new artspace with the addition of a new “white box” gallery wing and glazed river gallery.
The 600 sq m project will provide a 115 sq m gallery within the former Father Matthew Hall open to the roof structure, a 145 sq m “white box” gallery space within the new wing, informal meeting areas for the public and staff use and administration offices for the Art Gallery management and staff.
The palette of materials for the new gallery wing is limited to rough cut horizontal strips of limestone of varying widths asserting the mass of the new wing. Zinc clad roof lanterns will be set back from the parapet wall to allow the limestone to have prominence in the facade, whilst centralising the light penetrating into the gallery. The Father Matthew Hall will be re-rendered and re-roofed in slate, retaining externally the essence of its historical character, whilst internally it will be stripped back to its bare walls and roof structure.
This is Williams’ second commission in Athlone, the first being the multi award-winning Athlone Civic Centre and Library completed in 2004. Construction is expected to start in early 2010