Cork Institute of Technology Department of Architecture
Course: BSc (Hons) Interior Architecture
Young Cork Designer wins Best Interior Graduate
The National Institute of Designers in Ireland Graduate Design Awards was held at Cork Institute of Technology on Friday 9th November. A young graduate from Clonakilty, Sinead Crowley, became the first student from CIT’s 4 year old honours Interior Architecture Degree to win the National Interior Award.
The student had adapted Shannonvale Mills to accommodate a Sustainability Education and Exhibition Centre. “We are delighted for Sinead; it is a huge honour to win an IDI award both for her and the College! She is incredibly diligent and creative. So I really shouldn’t be surprised that she won in the most competitive discipline in the awards this year,” commented Marc O Riain, 4th year Lecturer in Interior Architecture.
I am Sinead Crowley and I am a Cork based Interior Architect from Clonakilty, recently graduated from the BSc(HONS) Interior Architecture course in CIT. I have a passionate approach to design which is fueled by everything I encounter- in particular, life’s impact on the environment. I firmly believe a competent, impressive design can be achieved with minimal impact on the world around us.
My final year project transforms the iconic Shannonvale Flour Mill in West Cork into The Re-Discovery Centre, an Environmental Awareness and Education Centre. The centre caters for people from all walks of life aiming to reconnect them with the environment while simultaneously promoting sustainable lifestyle choices. The facilities include a 7 storey interactive exhibition, farmers market, bicycle hire, allotments and office space for the client, Sustainable Clon. The primary aim of the design was the utilization of the building as an exhibition tool, seen in the case of the radical reuse of an old abandoned building but also through design exposing elements such as the “cycle to work” lifestyle. Maximising local expertise drives this design from enhancing existing features like the millrace but also through material use and sustainable strategies. The industrial feeling is revived in the mill as the building reconnects its user with the world around them.
Currently, I am residing in Dublin working as part of the team at Crowley Carbon Ltd based in Powerscourt House, Enniskerry. Working alongside architects and engineers, I am gaining experience combining design and cutting edge technology, retrofitting existing buildings in order to reduce energy usage and costs, both nationally and internationally. Furthermore I am kept busy with various freelance interior architecture projects ranging from domestic builds to exhibition design.
Cork Institute of Technology has been developing its Architecture Department spearheaded by head of Department Katherine Keane, in recent years. Its Interior Architecture and Architecture Technology degree courses will soon take up new accommodation in the old TYCO building on Melbourn Road in Bishopstown. The new Architecture Factory building will facilitate their new taught master’s course expected to start in September 2013.