National Gallery gets big revamp, but at what cost?
One of the country's biggest tourist attractions -- the National Gallery -- has been approved for a massive revamp.
Dublin City Council has given the Office of Public Works (OPW) permission to carry out extensive upgrades to the Merrion Square building.
The OPW will now go out to tender on the project, though it is unwilling to reveal how much the work will cost.
Permission has been granted to redevelop the gallery's four interconnected buildings, the Dargan, Milltown, Beit and Millennium wings.
Among the improvements planned is the construction of a new glass roof structure between Dargan and Milltown Wings.
The OPW will also install a new opening in the external facade of the Millennium Wing facing Dessie's Lane.
The range of works will increase the existing floor space of the gallery from 16,540sqm to 17,970sqm and will include the relocation of the William Dargan statue.
Ceilings, partitions, windows and stairwells throughout the buildings will be subject to upgrades, demolitions or relocations
The buildings which make up the gallery have been developed over the past 150 years, with the Millennium wing inaugurated in 2002.
The OPW told the Herald: "It is not possible to provide information on the budget for the proposed works as this would be prejudicial to a competitive tendering process in the event of the project going ahead."
The timing of the project will be "dependent on the availability of funding", a spokeswoman added.
Refurbishment work is already under way to the Dargan and Milltown sections and has meant the entrance at Merrion Square is now closed.
Visitors are directed through the Millennium wing at Clare Street.
However, the latest project is on a far larger scale and is expected to take several years to complete.