New DIT campus will redraw Dublin
Huge changes are afoot at DIT as its scattered campus begins the migration to a new home
“It’s a total reorientation from what there is now, extending the city fabric. It will have a huge impact on local businesses. There is a new small primary school planned, a new library and of course a Luas station.”
For those students expecting to move out of the city centre, Norton suggests that the city is spreading out with the development of the new campus and all its supporting infrastructure.
To those students remaining in the current buildings until 2017, Norton extends his reassurances; they will not find themselves abandoned in crumbling facilities to wait out the move. Light bulbs will be replaced. In fact, some facilities have been given refurbishments – for instance, the Fit2Go sports centre at the Kevin Street campus was given a facelift last autumn.
“We have invested heavily in our present facilities at Kevin Street, where we have new biology and chemistry labs, and at our architecture facilities in Linen Hall, including new classrooms and laboratories,” says Norton.
Meanwhile development at Grangegorman will see new classrooms and labs blended with original protected structures as well as performance spaces and sports facilities.
“Right now there are some fine refurbished stone buildings on the site that are well-preserved and full of light. These historical structures combined with the new buildings will together create a campus for the modern age,” says Norton.
So what will all this mean for those students getting an offer of a place in DIT this morning? They can expect to be inducted into the new campus very soon, according to Prof Norton.
“We’ll be fully inducting the students into the new building as an ongoing process. It’s already a DIT campus so students will be introduced to Grangegorman along with all our other sites. There’s a lot of SU activity already going on there so it’s very much part of the student experience already.”
One of the unique aspects of DIT has always been its scattered campus woven into the fabric of Dublin city. Will the next DIT be a more traditional college as a result of the move?
“DIT will still be intimately linked with city centre. It will share some of the features of a traditional campus, but will occupy a city quarter.
“It will be accessible to the city as it has always been, which for us represents the continuation of a metaphor: DIT as an intellectually accessible place of learning.”