Trinity’s new Law School is to be built on the north end of the campus, near the Samuel Beckett Theatre and not far from its current home in New Square, The University Times has learned.
At a recent meeting of University Council, Provost Patrick Prendergast said a site close to the Samuel Beckett Theatre has been assigned for the building, which will be funded through a combination of government investment and philanthropy.
In an email statement to The University Times, former Law School head Prof Oran Doyle, who is spearheading the project, said that the school will be funded “through a variety of sources, including philanthropy”.
The new building, he said, “will support the further development of our education programmes for the benefit of our law students”.
Doyle added that “a technical analysis is underway” to determine “the optimal location” for the building.
House 47, the building beside the Samuel Beckett Theatre, currently houses the College Health Service, which is set to move to a new home in Printing House Square in the near future.
At a meeting of College Board in March, Prendergast said that a development working group had been established to oversee the progress of the building.
The group is being chaired by Colm Duggan, a partner in corporate law firm Arthur Cox who also sits on the Provost’s council.
The University Times reported in March that the Law School hopes to have a new building constructed within five years.
At the time, at a town hall meeting with law students and staff, Doyle said that “within three or four months there’s probably going to be a definitive size for the building”.
Head of the Law School Prof Mark Bell said that the school is aiming to create a centralised law space that is “more modern and more flexible”. The building, he said, will have at least one large lecture theatre, as well as a moot court.
Currently, University College Dublin is the only university in Ireland with a law school containing a moot court.
Trinity’s Law School, located in House 39 in New Square, is one of the oldest law schools in Ireland. House 39 dates back to the mid-19th century. It is currently inaccessible to wheelchair users and does not have sufficient space to house the school’s undergraduate and postgraduate students.
In 2017, the Law School was earmarked as one of the first recipients of funds raised through Trinity’s inaugural philanthropy campaign.
The Inspiring Generations campaign, launched in May of this year, aims to raise €400 million in philanthropic donations. These funds will be used for projects to the Engineering, Environment and Emerging Technologies (E3) Institute as well as the College’s €1 billion Technology and Enterprise Campus (TTEC).
In October 2018, the College announced a €100-million investment from the European Investment Bank, which included plans for the construction of the new Law School, as well as a new 300-bed student accommodation complex in Trinity Hall.