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Tory Top Library is located in Ballyphehane, a well established suburb of Cork, on the edge of Tory Top Park (with grotto, football pitch, mature lime/poplar trees) and on a crest of the hill traversed by Friar’s Walk.

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The need for the development of a new library at Tory Top Road was identified as a priority in the Cork City Library Strategic Plan 1996-2001. The old library operated on part of the same site from 1974 until 2004, when it was demolished.

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The new library, designed by Cork City Architects, was completed at an overall cost of €2.3m. It provides approx. 750m2 floor area, which is roughly twice that of the previous library and has its own enclosed ‘courtyard’ garden. The building has a copper roof and is a generously proportioned single storey structure, designed to be fully accessible and user-friendly. The building’s design incorporates a number of effective sustainable features, such as a heating system provided from a ground source heat pump, plenty of daylight due to well located rooflights and naturally ventilated spaces, which spill out onto a secure child-friendly external green area of almost 400m2.

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Cork City Libraries opened this attractive and very popular local library in Tory Top Road in September 2005. It is located opposite a large park, close to the Ballyphehane Community Centre. The new library includes a community room to accommodate a wide variety of activities organized by both the library itself and by other groups/organizations.

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Design & Construction Team


City Architects, Cork City Council

M&E Engineers:

Arup Consulting Engineers

St Engineers:

Horgan Lynch

Quantity Surveyor:

Richard Leonard & Associates

Building Contractor:

O’Shea Builders Cork