The 29th of September 2020 marks the 50th anniversary of UCD’s move from Earlsfort Terrace to the Belfield Campus. To mark the occasion an online event will be held at 7 pm tonight with Eilis O’Brien, Director of UCD Marketing and Communication as Master of Ceremonies.

A number of faculty members will address the audience including Professor Orla Feely the UCD Vice President for Research, Innovation and Impact to UCD President, Professor Andrew Deeks. There will be a showing of the film ‘Shaping Belfield’ which reflects on the creation of the campus and Dr. Ellen Rowley will introduce a timeline exhibition. An architectural photographic exhibition will be introduced by Eilis O’Brien and Daniel Holfeld. Then, to close the event Professor Finola O’Kane Crimmons and Dr. Ellen Rowley will introduce their new book ‘Making Belfield: Space and Place’ which is an examination and celebration of the university’s architectural landscape.

Speaking to The College Tribune, UCD Communications Manager, Mary Staunton discussed the event and how the anniversary will be commemorated on campus. “A timeline exhibition will shortly be available to view at the exterior of the restaurant basement and you can also visit Conveying Space, a photographic exhibition located at the heart of campus which captures the atmospheric qualities of Wejchert’s architecture and emphasises the interaction between structure and natural light.” She concluded that although she predicts the audience to be mostly students and faculty members, the event will be of interest to anyone who has worked or studied at Belfield across the 50 years.

The story behind Belfield begins in the 1940s when UCD became the largest third-level institution in the country. Due to the unsuccessful attempts to expand the Earlsfort Terrace campus, which now houses the National Concert Hall, it was decided to move the university outside the city-centre and create a modern campus. The Science Department was the first to move to the new location in 1962 while the Arts, Commerce and Law Schools as well as the college administration remained in the city until 1970, however, the full move to Belfield wasn’t complete until 2007. The Belfield campus was always at the forefront of architectural design with the Water Tower winning the 1979 Irish Concrete Awards. 

Tickets for the event are free and reservations can be made on Eventbrite.

Adam O’Sullivan – Reporter