Dublin Docklands Reinvented
Published by Four Courts Press, 208 €40 ISBN 978 1 851828357
This book on the geographical development of the docklands adds greatly to the documentation of the development of Dublin City. It is a part of the series: The Making Of Dublin City. Niamh Moore has produced a comprehensive record including the politics and planning process that developed the derelict dock area to the financial centre of today. The socio economic aspects of the clearing of Sheriff Street are discussed in detail. There is much talk of community and the role of community leaders but little or no mention of the tangible tension and criminal corruption that infested the area. The residue of these inbred problems persists to this day but has been sidestepped just like fouling on the footpath. As a geographical study the book explains how the area was transformed in a bold stroke at a time of economic depression. Comparisons of the geography of renewal are made between London, Sydney and Dublin. This study will act as a primer for the designers of future changes in urban use. Study of the docklands redevelopment will help understand what can be done in other areas where the geographical fabric has changed and lareg areas are disused. While Niamh Moore describes the change process fully the removal of light industry to the suburban industrial estates is not covered. The removal of the manufacturing heart from the city is, I suppose, a suitable topic for another study. This book is finely produced and will be of interest to all who witnessed the transformation of evocative back streets into shining glass palaces.
reviewed by Ed Bourke