THE OPERA SITE PHOTOGRAPHED 2021 – MUCH HAS BEEN DEMOLISHED
The ‘Opera Site’ is located at the northern end of Limerick’s Georgian Quarter and measures c. 1.8 hectares (4.5 acres).
Below is a description of what was planned but it is possible that there have been some changes.
Project Opera proposes the redevelopment of an existing city block located on the south side of the River Abbey at the confluence with the River Shannon, adjacent to the Hunt Museum and east of Arthur’s Quay Shopping Centre. The site is bounded by Rutland Street and Patrick Street to the west, Ellen Street to the south, Michael Street to the east and Bank Place to the north.
There are two buildings within the site included on the Record of Protected Structures. The Town Hall, Rutland Street, was built in 1805 and is currently vacant and in a state of serious disrepair. The Granary, Michael Street, is one of the earliest known multiple storey warehouses to be built in Limerick, dating from the late 1700s.
The interior was comprehensively redeveloped in the 1980s, with new offices subject to modernisation in 2015. A further eight buildings on the site are included on the National Inventory of Architectural Heritage (NIAH). A number of these are vacant and in various stages of dereliction, despite a significant amount of remedial works undertaken by the Council in recent years to preserve their structural stability and architectural integrity.
The site is also host to the former Cahill May Roberts Building, fronting Bank Place, some existing and unused warehousing/workspace buildings at Bogue’s Yard and Watch House Lane. The southeast corner of the site currently includes a surface car park with approximately 100 No. spaces.