Excellence at its best

31 Aug , 2018  

Being in business for over 200 years, it comes as no surprise that Collen Construction Ltd have picked up numerous awards for their work down through the years.

One project recently completed by the renowned building firm was the construction of a new four-storey over basement infill office development with a gross floor area of 3,744 sq. metres. The project at 30-32 Molesworth Street and Schoolhouse Lane East, Dublin incorporated a car lift for access to ten car parking spaces and 40 bicycle spaces below the new brick and glazed extension situated to the rear of the existing building.

The project has been nominated in the commercial over €10 million for the Irish Construction Excellence Awards and despite picking up numerous awards over the years, Collen Senior Contracts Manager Derek McCaffrey explains to Building Ireland that it is always nice to receive recognition for what they do.

“There is no doubt that we are delighted to be nominated for such a prestigious award. We take great pride in the work that we do and this is in recognition for everyone that was involved on the project,” said Derek.

The building is located on Molesworth Street and connects through to School House Lane, taking up the gardens of the adjoining building onto Molesworth Street.

The new 4-storey over basement office accommodation was constructed following works to the existing building and included demolition of buildings to the rear and a reduced level dig to basement level one. The project included glazed atrium to internal landscaped courtyard, CAT A fit-out to landlord areas, construction of new ESB substation, installation of car lift to basement and two new passenger lifts. In addition to conservation and full internal finishes to the existing building, reclaimed features were included within the new extension.

The building has achieved many best in class energy innovations. At design stage extensive analysis was undertaken to deliver a highly sustainable building. The project joins a select group of innovative buildings that have demonstrated their commitment to sustainability in Ireland.

In total, the development took 16 months to complete and renovations included works to the protected structure at 30-32 Molesworth Street including reinstatement of the arched windows to the mid-landings of the stairs, repairs to surrounding facades, reinstatement of timber sash windows to all existing aluminium/PVC windows, internal remedial works to reinstate the integrity of the buildings; reinstatement of original window openings to the rear and replacement of non-period windows with contemporary windows reflecting the new build design.

“The greatest challenge with this project was the location of the site. Working within the tight city centre environs and resulted in multiple constraints including limitation to a single tower crane due to full site coverage in addition to operating adjacent to live offices and residential developments. Regular communication with the occupants of the apartments and offices was crucial.

“Strategies were employed to mitigate the constraints. At the busiest point in the project, a total of 110 people were working on the site and to manage logistical issues, innovative ‘Just In Time’ strategies were put in place.”

Specialist works included Preprufe tanking systems by Baridek Services, curtain walling systems (used in the link atrium and internal atrium) by Raico, complete restoration of existing sliding sash windows on No. 32 and installation of replica sash windows to the rear of 30 and 31, carried out by Callaghan Sash Windows, plasterwork sensitively restored by Paul Griffen Plastering. A single storey Car lift was installed by Swisspark and two lifts from basement to the third floor installed by Kone.

“We were very proud to deliver another successful project for our existing client of over 20 years, Green Property. Managing the restoration works on the 18th Century Georgian building in tandem with new construction works and combining the two buildings in a seamless fashion provided an interesting mix on the development.”

Other projects that Derek is currently involved with include a seven-storey eco-glass building on Abbey Street and Brickfield Lane Student Accommodation on Cork Street, Co. Dublin. The latter comprises construction of a five-storey €19.8 million project incorporating a new 276-bed student accommodation facility complete with state of the art gym.

Derek is also working on the Bray Primary Care centre, involving demolition of an existing clinic. The new project will provide a new primary health care centre on the Killarney Road in the town’s central business district.

“We are very busy at the moment. We have a number of projects ongoing both in Ireland and in Sweden at present. We’ve completed projects in the UK recently, but there are plenty of opportunities in Ireland with both existing and potential new clients that we would like to focus on. We will only commit to projects we can deliver to the highest standards and our clients have come to expect that from Collen.

Collen Construction is a long established company, set up in 1810 with an enviable reputation for building quality and excellence. The firm has weathered the recession extremely well and managed to grow year on year throughout the lean years.

Contact Details:

Collen Construction Ltd.,


East Wall Road,

Dublin 3, Ireland.

Tel: +353 (0)1 8745411

Email: [email protected]

Web: www.collen.com

Taken from Building Ireland Magazine, June 2018, Vol 4 No 5