Work on two Dublin museums to commemorate the 1916 Rising – at the GPO on O’Connell Street and the National Monument on Moore Street – is to begin this year.
Designs for the restoration of the National Monument buildings at 14-17 Moore Street and their conversion into a 1916 Commemorative Centre have been submitted to Minister for Arts, Jimmy Deenihan.
Separately, An Post has secured planning permission for a 1916 Rising exhibition and visitor centre for the GPO. Work on both is due to start later this year so they will be completed in time for the centenary of the Rising.
The Moore Street development will involve the restoration of four pre-1916 buildings used during the rising, and the creation of the museum as ordered by Mr Deenihan last July.
It will also involve the demolition of numbers 18 and 19, which currently house the popular Paris Bakery.
Developer Joe O'Reilly's Chartered Land was granted planning permission in 2010 for the €900 million Dublin Central shopping centre on a 2.7 hectare development on a site stretching from the former Carlton cinema on O'Connell Street to Moore Street. However, no construction started and the lands now form part of Nama's portfolio of loans.
As parts of the proposed development took in buildings that had been declared a national monument, ministerial consent was required for any work which might affect them. Mr Deenihan gave consent last year on the basis of the creation of the commemorative centre.
A spokeswoman for Chartered Land said it hoped to begin work later this year, “subject to confirmation from the Minister that our amended plans comply with his decision in July 2013”.
She said the firm had permission for the demolition of numbers 18 and 19 Moore Street. The bakery owners had a short-term lease and had been advised to seek alternative premises. The bakery, which employs 70 people, has secured 3,000 signatures in support of its appeal to remain on the site.
Separately An Post has secured final permission from Dublin City council for its plans for the GPO: Witness History centre and plans to start work this summer. Expected to cost about €5 million, the facility will include a cafe and “sculpture court” as well as a two-storey exhibition centre.