Visitors to Dublin will notice a major change to the skyline on the next approach to the city’s airport. Demolition has begun on high-rise apartment blocks nearby in Ballymun. The first high block to be knocked was the 15-story Sean MacDermott Tower, named after one of the signatories to the 1916 Proclamation. Hundreds of Dubliners gathered to watch the controlled explosion, and the tower that stood for 40 years came crashing down in five seconds.
The demolition of the high-rise towers is part of a massive regeneration plan for Ballymun on Dublin’s northside. The 2.5-billion project includes designs for social housing to overcome many of the problems associated with the 36-block high-rise complex originally built in the 1960s.
A new hotel will be constructed on the site of the MacDermott Tower. Many of the smaller blocks have been dismantled rather than imploded. The regeneration project is scheduled for completion between 2012 and 2015. ♦