The shape of the site is rationalised to improve the configuration and increase the width of the public domain of the footpaths adjoining it. In form, the building consists of one simple block, cranked to enclose a shared garden that faces south. It contains a mix of uses, including live-work units, apartments, a café, retail space, crèche and a communal meeting room. A basement accommodates car and bicycle parking as well as refuse storage and recycling.
The design follows the precedent set by the historic context of building in Dublin, exhibiting a relatively closed face to the surrounding streets while adopting a much more open aspect to the south and the courtyard and exploiting the distant view of the mountains; the elevations seek to balance horizontal and vertical elements in accordance with local tradition, employing a limited palette of materials and colours that are simple and consistent. It pursues a clear difference between ‘front’ and ‘back’: to the street, it extends existing building lines and is deliberately monolithic and impermeable in appearance in order to strength the street frontages and offer a sense of privacy to the courtyard behind; to the garden, however, its line indents and is rendered ambiguous by extensive glazing, which blurs the boundary between inside and out as well as flooding living rooms with southern light and maximising their view of the city and the mountains beyond.