Airfield Trust Evolution
Airfield is a 35 acre estate that has been open to the public since 1998; the former home of Letitia and Naomi Overend, Airfield is now a unique enclave, a working farm and gardens in the midst of urban and suburban development.
Solearth is leading a multidisciplinary design team, working from the previous sustainable masterplan, to provide an enhanced landscape of farm and garden activities; structures and buildings that make a positive contribution to the ‘Airfield experience’; conservation works that will strengthen the architectural character of the existing building stock and the development of sustainable and energy efficient designs based on passive measures.
Architecturally there are a number of drivers: The first is a reorientation of the visitor access into the Estate with a new entrance avenue across Dudley’s Field from Overend Way. A new entrance pavilion with relocated garden centre and café in this position allows both the paid visitor and the general public to use the facilities.
The second driver is to expand the visitor experience to the whole site and encourage the visiting of areas to the south east which are little visited - The development and extension of additional horticultural spaces in proximity to the House reflects the hierarchy of scale of the existing external spaces.
The third driver is to reinvigorate the existing House: the decision to remove the café out of the House to a new pavilion structure to the south alleviates pressures and allows for restoration of the existing building. Furthermore, it presents Airfield with a natural space in which to exhibit the Overend archive.
The fourth driver is the restructuring of the core educational buildings to the east of Airfield House. The proposal looks to re-establish the historic building line and spatial rhythm through the demolition of the shop and timber yard and the provision of a new multi-function teaching and event space that defines a courtyard to the east and garden to the west.
Finally, the focussing of the farm activities in a new farm centre provides an important destination for the visitor and school groups.
- Contract Value:
- € 7.5 million
- Dundrum, Dublin