Castleisland Community College wins National Home Design Competition

The Castleisland Community College ‘Build a Home’ competition winning team with teacher Aidan Joy. Freddie Galwey, Emma Kerin, Celia Mc Mahon, Laura Burke, Chloe Barrett, Hector Barranco Canales, Abbie Mahony, Shauna Tangney, Rachel Murphy, Bernadette O’Mahony.
Taking delivery of the laser equipment prizes are: Teresa Landers, principal; Donnacha Hickey, teacher;  Will Doyle, Topcon Positioning Ireland;  Mairéad Corridon, deputy principal and Aidan Joy, teacher.
The winning design for the Construction Industry Federation (CIF) promoted ‘A Home for Everyone’ which won the competition for the Castleisland Community College team of students and teacher.

Transition Year students from Castleisland Community College have won the Construction Industry Federation (CIF) promoted A Home for Everyone competition,

Over 50 schools nationwide took part in the competition and its remit was to design a home that helps solve the housing crisis, is sustainable and addresses inclusivity.

The judges included Dermot Bannon, architect and host of Room to Improve – along with Frank Kelly, president of the CIF; Orna Hanly, head of Dublin School of Architecture; Carole Smilie, director, BPL Management and John Sweeney, senior contracts manager, Collen Construction.

Woodwork Teacher’s Dream

The prizes for coming first place in the competition has been described as ‘every woodwork teacher’s dream.’

The school has won high end measuring equipment, a laser level to the value of €5,000 and a masterclass in the use of the equipment as well as €5,000 worth of wi-fi equipment.

The students have each won a CIF scholarship or access to the its apprenticeship programme if they wish to pursue a career in the construction industry.

CIF Jacket and €250

Finally, each student received a CIF jacket plus a further €250 for the school.

The design will now be rendered into a three-dimensional model, so that ambassadors, politicians, celebrities, parents and local councillors can ‘walk’ through the house with the students in late 2021.

The students were aware that 4,000 homeless children in Ireland don’t have the same comforts and opportunities that they have – a place to call ‘Home.’

Growing Housing Problem

To further compound this growing housing problem, Ireland has a direct provision issue that has been largely ignored.

Recent announcements by the government has suggested that housing will be offered to these people as part of a solution by 2024. The name of the students’ project was titled ‘No man is an Island’ as it summed up the mood of the students.

“We need to help the vulnerable in society – for our society to work and this links in with the school vision,” said Principal Teresa Lonergan.

Community and Teamwork

“Here the sense of community and teamwork play a huge role in everything that we try to achieve together.

“Everybody within the team had a role and a responsibility suited to their strengths,” said Ms. Lonergan.

Teacher Aidan Joy guided the students in their design and progress and he said that everyday he enters the college he continues to be blown away by the humility and hardworking nature of the students.

The Iceberg’s Tip

“This project is the tip of the iceberg as to what can be achieved and the future is very bright for the students involved in this and other projects of this nature.

“The resilience built during remote learning has galvanised their strength as young adults,” said Mr. Joy.

The college team invited past pupil and CEO of Madden and Mangan Construction Ltd, Lee Mangan to the school in order to gain a professional view of their ideas.

Fire Escape and Accessibility

Their initial idea was for an apartment type solution, however Lee advised against expensive solutions as he said lifts were expensive and brought many headaches and issues such as fire escape and accessibility issues associated with wheelchair users and access.

Lee advised the students on key areas such as continuous wrap of insulation around the entire building as being of foremost importance.

He also told them that access to the site is a factor on the cost of the building with air tightness, heating systems and underfloor heating all playing roles in the overall plan.

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