Over the years Belfast has been called the art deco capital of Ireland due to its pre-war buildings like the Bank of Ireland or Sinclair’s department store. However, some call its modern construction less impressive. This could be perceived to be the case due to the city’s long periods of recession, as well as the bombing of commercial targets during the war.
However there are still several beautiful and/or intriguing examples of modern architecture in the city and there has been a recent resurgence in modern architecture in Belfast in recent years as Northern Ireland architects have taken on the challenge of reinvigorating the city. Here are a few examples of some of the best pieces of modern architecture in the city.
The Ulster Museum
In 1971, Francis Pym created an extension to the Ulster Museum, which was then thought of as a modern architectural success. It was also closed for three years between 2006 and 2009 for renovations. Over the centuries it has housed many exhibits and remains a popular tourist attraction and pleasurable sight for locals.
Victor Robinson’s Belfast Waterfront Hall
The world renown Belfast Waterfront Hall is a concrete framed building made up of a huge circle shaped drum of Portland stone, red brick and granite. It has a huge glass and copper covered roof with a shallow dome.There is also a smaller four-sided building that holds the studio theatre. It was built to last and is said to speak of the people’s confidence in the city’s future.
Designed by O’Donnell and Tuomey, an architectural practice in Dublin, this is a remake of the old Lyric Theatre which was completed in 2011. It has been used for several arts based peices since then and evena memorable meeting between Queen Elizabeth II and Martin McGuiness in June 2012.
The Titanic Museum is shaped like a boat itself, but some say it looks more like the iceberg that sank its namesake. The museum was completed in 2012, and was built to tell the tragic story of the famous boat that was hit and sunk by an iceberg, causing the deaths of nearly all onboard on its maiden trip 100 years earlier in 1912. The concept artists for the Titanic Museum were Eric Kuhne and Associates.
The front features a bronze figure of a diving female created by Rowan Gillespie and was meant to inspire hope and positive thoughts. The majority of the structure is covered in more than 3,000 anodized aluminum shards over its 126 feet high construction, the exact same as the Titanic ship’s hull.
Built in 2006, this is another example of modern Belfast architecture, and was created by the team of Broadway Malyan and Chris Marshall. It is is a high rise apartment building that is 279 feet high with 233 apartments and office spaces.
Another eye catching piece of modern architecture in the Belfast Skyline is Victoria Square, a commercial and residential structure built and designed by Multi Development UK. It is 800,000 feet in size and opened in 2008. Its main design focus is a huge glass dome covering an entire public square. There are 17 different structures inside with links for pedestrians to walk to places like restaurants,, shopping areas, a cinema and other businesses nearby.
If you would like to discuss adding your vision to the list of modern architecture in Belfast then get in touch with us today and let’s talk.