Ella House - Sustainable architecture

The Georgian squares, streets and townhouses of Dublin are internationally renowned, and are part of the unique heritage and identity of our city.

Like the neighbouring buildings, Dublin City Council lists 39 – 43 Merrion Square on its Record of Protected Structures. As buildings of architectural or historic interest, listed buildings contribute significantly to the quality of our built environment, our economy and our cultural heritage.

This part of Georgian Dublin was built up to 240 years ago, and illustrates how well-constructed buildings have the longevity and flexibility to accommodate many changes in social and economic requirements during their lifetime. This is a true measure of sustainable architecture.

Ella House: some of the sustainable features & initiatives

  • Upgrade of heating to latest energy efficient electric heating system
  • Improved thermal envelope efficiency with extensive facade restoration
  • Installation of solar panels
  • Lighting upgrade to low energy and LED lighting
  • Use of re-conditioned light fittings in place of new
  • Removal of hard surfaces to rear and extensive tree and shrub planting in three garden spaces
  • Installation of dual flush WCs and water saving taps
  • Windows re-conditioned throughout and insulation of floor and roof spaces
  • Salvaging and careful restoration of many existing original stone, timber and tiled floors for reuse
  • Restoration of existing doors, joinery and ceilings

Historic buildings - climate friendly

Historic buildings are climate friendly due to their use of passive design techniques, such as optimal solar orientation, room layouts to maximize natural light, dense masonry envelopes, and classical design principles for window sizing and placement alongside other perfected building techniques. These techniques aim to improve building performance, reduce energy demand, and enhance indoor air quality and personal health by utilizing natural daylight, ventilation, and other renewable resources. Thus, traditional architecture is low-impact and energy-efficient, and retrofitting these buildings to meet modern needs can help cities achieve sustainable urban environments.

Reusing building materials and historic site work significantly reduces emissions compared to constructing a new building. In fact, the carbon footprint of a refurbished building is only half that of a newly-built replacement.

Ella House, located at 39 - 43 Merrion Square, is currently undergoing a comprehensive refurbishment to enhance its impressive original features, while upgrading the building fabric and services to further reduce CO2 emissions associated with its operation and use. This once-in-a-generation project will better position the buildings to meet the evolving needs of society and economy with new uses, while also minimising their environmental impact.

Building Management: sustainable initiatives

  • Building management promotes and supports recycling of waste – electrical, batteries and paper/packaging
  • Members handbook outlining the sustainable initiatives in place, with a guide to the day-to-day habits members can adopt
  • Facilitation of waste segregation in kitchens/offices and onsite

Other sustainable attributes

  • Ella House is centrally located with numerous sustainable transport options nearby – walk / bike / bus / LUAS / train
  • Onsite electric bike scheme in partnership with Bleeper Bikes
  • Facilities support cycling with showers, lockers and bike storage