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54 George's Street Lower
Dublin, County Dublin,

01 5585205

Award Wining Architects based in Monkstown, Co.Dublin and working in all surrounding counties.

Specialising in sensitive contemporary design for domestic extensions, renovations, new-build houses and interior design.  We also design and build custom joinery.

RIAI registered architects, project managers & interior designers

Dublin Architecture Blog

Hofler Architects Dublin  - Our Blog of our news and views.

Filtering by Tag: One-off House

New Rural House Design, Oldcastle, Co. Meath - Project Update

Paul Mulhern

I have been working on a new one-off house on the site of an intriguing old ruined farm just outside of Oldcastle in Co. Meath.  The stone ruins form two semi-enclose courtyards to the north and south and the existing site levels vary by over three floors with huge stone retaining walls forming boundaries to the adjoining fields.  There is also a detached ruined farmhouse to the west, an old orchard field and a nearby stream.  We are planning to salvage and reuse the stone for the main elevations.



The nature of the site makes for a challenging and interesting project.  We are proposing to build on the site of the existing main structure so are not introducing new buildings into the landscape. Due to the differing levels we've ended up with a three-storey design that places the living spaces on the top floor.  This allows us to benefit from the beautiful views in all directions while hiding most of the volume of the house.  Only the uppermost floor of three is visible from the main vantage points outside of the site.  Placing the living spaces up top also allows us to create bright and open accommodation with exposed chunky oak roof trusses supporting the natural slate roof.  Views to the north are framed with by a large glazed opening that slides open to a narrow step-out balcony.  A large raised terrace is located to the south and this is on top of part of the master bedroom.  The terrace connects with steps down to the main semi-enclosed courtyard garden at the rear.

The two double bedrooms and their en suite bathrooms are located on the middle floor.  The master bedroom has large windows and a glazed door leading out to the south courtyard with its beautiful enclosing retaining walls.  We'll be designing bespoke joinery for the rooms including a deep window seat here.

The ground floor entry level is below ground level to the south and east.  As well as the entry hall and W.C. this level will contain generous storage space and room for plant equipment for heating, solar panels, heat-pump and rainwater recycling.

The staircase will be an impressive design element linking all three floors.  It will feature stone from ground to first floor and then change to lighter hardwood above where it will wrap around the walls an include a walkway with views up and down.  Light will filter down from the numerous openings above creating a bright and inviting space.

The project meets all criteria of Meath County Council's Rural design Guide and is due to go in for planning permission.  We'll post progress updates here on that process and the continuing work on construction drawings and the full interior design scheme.

Read our earlier post on the reuse of farm buildings here.

Read about Paul's previous work at the Rock Farm Straw Bale Project here

Here's a link to Meath County Council's Rural Design Guide.

Contact SPACIOUS Architects to discuss any queries or potential project HERE

Building regulations for one-off homes and extensions rolled back

Paul Mulhern

Changes to the Building Control (Amendment) Regulations 2014, S.I. 9 of 2014

Hofler Architects - Domestic Extension Work Under Construction.

Hofler Architects - Domestic Extension Work Under Construction.

The Department of the Environment, Community and Local Government had been undertaking a review of the Building Control (Amendment) Regulations 2014 (S.I. No. 9 of 2014), to include an examination of the cost burden involved for one-off houses, including self-build, and extensions to existing dwellings.

The review of the regulations by the Minister was because of what he said were “outlandish charges” being sought for the inspections required under new system.

The review examined the first 12 months of the mandatory certification requirement, and Minister of State for Housing and Planning Paudie Coffey yesterday announced amendments to the regime:

He said the changes “remove the mandatory requirement for statutory certificates of compliance in respect of a new dwelling on a single unit development or a domestic extension”.

Owners including self-builders will in future be given the choice to opt out of statutory certification and are to be allowed instead to “demonstrate by alternative means that they have met their general obligation to build in accordance with the minimum requirements of the building regulations”.

Alternative means may include the opinions of building professionals, such as architects and inspections by local authorities.

To ensure that building standards do not slip, a local authority inspection process is to be introduced. Mr Coffey said the Department of Environment would engage with the local authorities to ensure they develop the inspection capacity “over time”.

Mr Coffey said there would be with definitive targets and timelines to ensure progressive improvement by local authorities in all sectors including inspections of single dwellings, multi-unit residential developments and commercial buildings.

The mandatory requirement for certification will remain in place for all multi-unit developments.

Mr Coffey said he was satisfied the new arrangements would “level the playing field for individuals and families planning to build or extend their own home” and that they would “no longer be held to ransom by excessive quotes for design and completion certificates”.

“Owners who wish to invest in statutory certification may of course continue to do so and I believe many will do so where reasonable and affordable prices can be obtained,” he said.

Contact SPACIOUS Dublin to discuss our arrangements for dealing with the evolving Building Regulations.

Independent News article - New rules will remove requirement for one-off homes to be inspected.


SPACIOUS Architects - Working throughout Dublin & beyond.   - Our Blog.

Hofler Architects have extensive experience in house extensions, refurbishments, sustainability, conservation of protected structures and  one-off new builds.  We are a highly experienced team of architects based in Monkstown, Co. Dublin. The practice was established in 1992 and offers a full range of architecture services for domestic works, conservation, housing & apartment developments, and many commercial sectors including bars, restaurants, offices, educational and retail.

"This is a great example of a meticulous period restoration - as green as a period house can be" - The Irish Times.