Wednesday, January 15, 2014


CHQ is a massive retail arcade which straddles Dublin's Custom House Quay (CHQ) and George's Dock. Its principal catchment area seems to be the IFSC financial sector from the George's Dock side, though it is also on the tourist trail at the Custom House Quay end (above), where it is close to the Famine Monument and the Jeanie Johnston famine ship.

I had occasion to walk through it the other day and was gobsmacked by how empty it was. I would estimate that well over 50% of the shops were vacant and there was hardly anyone around except in the cafés which seem to be weathering the recession. The gym was also open.

I had encountered this phenomenon in recent times in the Irish Life mall. There, a pathetic two dimensional attempt had been made to give an appearance of activity with fake shopfronts. Not so here. Vacancy stares you in the face, in all its naked honesty. Virtually all the fronts shown in the picture above are vacant.

And here is another row of vacancy. All very depressing.

It's just as well that I subsequently happened on Sueann Moore's Dockland Days exhibition in Pearse St. library. Raised my spirits no end.

History of CHQ/STACK A

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