Stephen's Green Shopping Centre
Stephen's Green Shopping Centre is a large indoor shopping centre located at the top of Grafton Street on the Southside of Dublin. It is named after St. Stephen's Green, a major city park situated across the road from its main entrance. Its street address is Stephen's Green West.
|Opening date||8 November 1988|
|Owner||Jones, Lang and LaSalle|
|No. of stores and services||100|
|No. of anchor tenants||3|
|Total retail floor area||70,000 square metres (750,000 sq ft)|
|No. of floors||3|
|Website||Stephen's Green Centre website|
The site of the shopping centre was assembled over 15 years by the Slazenger family, beginning in 1966. In total, more than 150 individual property owners were bought out over that period. Most the buildings were Georgian, and these were left to fall into disrepair and ruin as plans for an extensive redevelopment of the site as an office block and shopping centre totalling almost half-a-million square feet were drawn up. The original architects were Scott Tallon Walker, and planning permission for their scheme was granted in 1975. During the recession of the late 1970s, the small shops were rented out under a scheme known as the "Gaiety Green". At the weekends, this became known as the Dandelion Market, known for its alternative vendors, popular with younger people. U2 played some of their earliest gigs at the market.
The site was put up for sale in 1980, and was purchased by Patrick Gallagher in April 1981 for £10.5 million. Most of the buildings on the site were demolished while Gallagher attempted to sell the site, unsuccessfully, to Irish Life. He also sought permission to erect a show house for his Fortunestown development in Tallaght but this was rejected by Dublin Corporation. After Gallagher went bankrupt, the site reverted back to the Slazengers, and it was placed back on the market in 1983, and later sold for £5 million to Power Securities. They drew up plan for 7 acres of retail, bar and restaurant spaces, with 40 luxury flats and parking for 800 cars.
The market, which closed in 1981, is commemorated with a plaque, while Sinnotts Bar on South King Street is the only trader from the original site that remains.
Work began on the shopping centre in 1986, with plans for anchor and specialist shops, restaurants and bars, leisure facilities, and, at a cost of £15 million, 700 parking spaces. The final plan for the centre was designed by James Toomey. The project was completed in 1998, with a total budget of £50 million, and the centre officially opened its doors on 8 November that year, though with only 4 units ready on the first day. The use of glass and ornate white iron work on the exterior has been "likened to a Mississippi steamboat moored on the edge of the Green" and the building is locally often called "The Wedding Cake".
- McDonald 1985, p. 267-268.
- "Dandelion Market". www.johnfisher.ie. Retrieved 17 January 2021.
- McDonald 1985, p. 274-275.
- Bird, Charlie (11 June 1986). "Landmark Development for St Stephen's Green, 1986". RTE News. Retrieved 17 January 2021.
- McDonald, Kevin (8 November 1988). "Stephen's Green Shopping Centre Opens, 1988". RTE News. Retrieved 17 January 2021.
- Casey, Christine (2005). Dublin : the city within the Grand and Royal Canals and the Circular Road with the Phoenix Park. New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Press. p. 546. ISBN 0-300-10923-7. OCLC 61702208.
- Berlitz Pocket Guide Dublin. UK & Switzerland: Berlitz (APA). 31 October 2016. p. 60. ISBN 9781780047706.
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