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Dublin Docklands facts for kids

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Map of Dublin; the Dublin Docklands are circled.
Red circle.svg
Map of Dublin; the Dublin Docklands are circled.
Samuel Beckett Bridge by day
The Samuel Beckett Bridge and the Convention Centre Dublin are prominent docklands landmarks
Dublin Docklands viewed from east to west

Dublin Docklands (Irish: Ceantar Dugaí Átha Cliath) is an area of the city of Dublin, Ireland, on both sides of the River Liffey, roughly from Talbot Memorial Bridge eastwards to the 3Arena. It mainly falls within the city's D01 and D02 postal districts but includes some of the urban fringes of the D04 district on its southernmost side.

In the late 20th and early 21st centuries, the docklands area was regenerated as an extension of the business hub of Dublin's International Financial Services Centre (IFSC). By 2008 the area had over 599 enterprises. While growth slowed considerably due to the post-2008 Irish economic downturn, since 2014, property values and development activity has made a recovery.

New infrastructure, built in the area in the 21st century, has included the Samuel Beckett Bridge and the LUAS Docklands extension. Venues, including the Bord Gáis Energy Theatre, the refurbished 3Arena and the Convention Centre Dublin are also in the area.

The rusting Grand Canal Docks sign at the opening to the Grand Canal.


Projects under construction/planned

  • On 22 May 2014, it was announced that a fast-track planning process was approved by An Bord Pleanala. 366,000 square metres of office space and 2,600 homes will be developed across 22 hectares of land in the North Lotts (in North Wall) and Grand Canal Dock areas under the Docklands Strategic Development Zone (SDZ) planning scheme.

Completed projects

Grand Canal Square
A view of Grand Canal Square in Dublin's regenerated Docklands. The Bord Gais Energy Theatre is in the centre, Accenture's Global Head Office is on the left and The Marker Hotel on the right.
  • Spencer Dock: This development is said to have been the centre-piece in the biggest and most ambitious urban regeneration project in Ireland's history and was originally planned to include waterside apartments, offices, retail space, a linear park and local amenities for leisure activities, although some of this was scaled back due to the economic recession. It is also the location of the Convention Centre Dublin.
  • Point Village: A redevelopment beside The Point Depot, it includes a hotel, a shopping centre, 13,000 m² of office space, a 3-story underground car park, a 12-screen cinema, and more. While the hotel and cinema opened, the shopping centre and office space remain empty. A "U2 Experience" Museum was originally planned for the development, but was instead opened as a permanent exhibition in the Little Museum of Dublin on St. Stephen's Green and renamed "U2: Made in Dublin".
  • Grand Canal Dock: The Grand Canal Dock (GCD) is the project that transformed the derelict and heavily contaminated 10ha gas site at the east end of Pearse Street into the hugely successful 250,000m2 Grand Canal Harbour development of 80,000m2 offices, 1,200 apartments, 10,000m2 retail/bars/restaurants together with a 2,200 seat theatre and a (150 bedroom) 5-star hotel. This and the other elements of the GCD are now known as Silicon Docks and host the European HQs of Google, Facebook, LinkedIn and many more. Completed projects include Grand Canal Square, Marker Hotel, Alto Vetro, Google Docks (Montevetro), the Bord Gais Energy Theatre and more.

Temporary projects

  • Wheel of Dublin: From July 2010 to November 2011, the 10 million euro, 350 tonne, 60 metre tall, 42 capsule Ferris wheel operated beside ‘O2 Dublin’ (now the 3Arena). Before its arrival in Dublin, the wheel had been located beside Belfast’s City Hall from October 2007 to April 2010. Following closure in Belfast, it was dismantled and transported to Dublin. It closed due to a lack of demand, and was once again on the move, this time to York in the UK.
  • Point Village Market: The outdoor weekend market was developed by businessman Harry Crosbie. It featured a large open-air stage with performances from local musicians. The market stalls offered traditional farmers' produce as well as household goods, crafts, antiques, and students' art wares. The Point Village Market was open from May to November 2010.(video link [1])
  • Point Village on Ice: The 5000 square feet outdoor ice rink was open for a short time in the winter of 2010-2011. It opened again December 2014-January 2015.

Projects on hold/cancelled

  • U2 Tower: Also known as Britain Quay Tower, it was intended to be the tallest building on the island of Ireland at an estimated 180m. It was meant to house a recording studio for U2. In October 2008, the project was suspended indefinitely because of the economic downturn. Proposals to revive the plan were reported in July 2013.
  • Point Village Watchtower: Point Village was originally intended to house a 120m tower, which would have included apartments, office space, a miniature TV and radio studio, and rooftop bar and restaurant with panoramic views over Dublin Bay. The project was abandoned due to the difficult economic situation faced by the Docklands Authority.
  • Chocolate Factory Park: While it was reported that the building of the park was "underway" in 2005, and it was reported in 2006 that the park was being developed, the park was never built. However, in 2014 it was reported that the park would be completed by summer 2015. Currently there is a derelict site notice (within the meaning of the Derelict Sites Act 1990) dated 6 May 2014 posted at the location.
  • North Lotts Park: It was reported in 2014 that the park has been completed. The original plan was cancelled and instead the small "Central Square" park was opened at Spencer Dock Luas station.
  • Royal Canal Linear Park: The design for the one kilometre public park on the banks of the Royal Canal in Dublin's Docklands was unveiled 11 August 2008. It was to be called the "Royal Canal Linear Park" and was designed by Paris-based architectural practice, Agence Ter. It was to feature floating gardens, playgrounds, pavilions, new bridges and sporting facilities covering six hectares. Instead, a much smaller area along the Royal Canal at Guild Street between the River Liffey and Sheriff Street Upper was cleared and grass planted.


LUAS TRAM STOP AT SPENCER DOCK (11 JANUARY 2018)-135344 (39606009392)
A Luas tram at Spencer Dock

DART (Dublin Area Rapid Transport) rail service has four local Dockland stations. Connolly Station north of the River Liffey and Tara Street Station south of the River are within five minutes' walk of the International Financial Services Centre (IFSC) in Docklands. At peak times, the DART runs every 10 minutes. Pearse Station and Grand Canal Dock Station service the remainder of South Docklands.

An extension of the Luas, Dublin's tram service, runs from the city centre along Mayor Street into the northside Docklands. It has Docklands stops at Georges Dock, Mayor Square, Spencer Dock and terminates at the Point adjacent to the 3Arena and the Gibson Hotel. At peak times the Docklands Luas extension runs every four minutes.

Iarnród Éireann opened a train station in the area in 2007. The Docklands railway station commenced service on 12 March 2007 and serves the Maynooth commuter rail line (except Drumcondra station) as far as the M3 Parkway.

Thirteen Dublin Bikes stations were opened in the Docklands in 2013–2014, at Custom House Quay, City Quay, Excise Walk, Lime Street, Guild Street, Convention Centre, New Central Bank, The Point, Benson Street, Hanover Quay, Grand Canal Dock, Barrow Street, and South Dock Road.


There are numerous hotels in the Dublin Docklands area located on both sides of the river. The Gibson Hotel (4 star) is the closest hotel to the 3Arena concert venue, while the Clarion Hotel IFSC (4 star) and Jury’s Inn Custom House (3 star) are both close to the Convention Centre Dublin.

On the south side of the river there is the Maldron Hotel (4 star) on Cardiff Lane and the Marker Hotel (5 star) on Grand Canal Square both close to the Bord Gais Energy Theatre. Also on this side of the river are the Ferryman Hotel (2 star) above the Ferryman Pub, one of a handful of old landmarks in the Docklands.

Docklands Business Forum

Steering Committee Docklands Business Forum
Steering Committee of the Docklands Business Forum, from left to right; Brian Smyth, Tim Darmody, Robert Colleran, Laura O'Donovan, Alan Robinson (CEO), Betty Ashe, John McElhinney (Treasurer), Ciaran Flanagan (Chairman), Nicholas Cloake and Michael Noel Harte. Steering members not included in image are John Treacy and Sarah Conway.

The Docklands Business Forum is the business association for the Dublin Docklands and is recognised as the primary business organisation by the Dublin Docklands Area Master Plan 2008. With a membership representing over 35,000 employees, including many of the key national and international players in the finance, legal, digital and communications sectors, the DBF is a key stakeholder in the Docklands’ area.

The Steering Committee is elected at the Docklands Business Forum AGM each year. Its role is to provide policy, governance and oversight for the Forum. It is a non executive committee and its members are not remunerated for their services on the Committee.

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