The Cork Better Building awards honour the best-designed and best-kept buildings in Cork City and suburbs, and are aimed at rewarding businesses and building caretakers for their efforts to protect, enhance, and improve the city’s streetscape.
Superdry on St Patrick’s Street received a Special Merit Award in the Best in Retail section for “integrating the needs of a modern, international, clothes store with the preservation of a historic building and shopfront on Cork’s main shopping street and destination”.
“The original bronze shopfront, dating from 1935, has been carefully restored with its floral plaques, round-headed, central pediment with ‘The Moderne’ written in serif lettering, presenting a unique frontage onto the street,” said the judges.
Superdry restored the distinctive sign last year following the intervention of planning officials and a formal complaint from a member of the public after the distinctive façade of The Moderne store was painted over and replaced with a neon Superdry sign.
The awards were presented by the Deputy Lord Mayor of Cork Cllr Fergal Dennehy and president of Cork Business Association Pat O’Connell, at a lunch in The River Lee Hotel yesterday.
Other winners included Keane’s Jewellers on Oliver Plunkett Street; Dan Lowrey’s pub on MacCurtain Street; Curran’s Restaurant on Adelaide Street; Matt Fallon for the restoration work to the ground floor of the Matt Fallon Property Partners commercial building at the corner of South Mall and Grand Parade; The Imperial Hotel on South Mall; AIB North Main Street; and Alchemy bookstore on Barrack Street.
Speaking at the awards, Mr O’Connell said people often forget what a beautiful city Cork is and how rich and diverse its architectural offering is. The awards are a fantastic opportunity to encourage businesses to improve their facades and the overall look of the city’s streetscape,” he said.
“Much of the attention of the awards is on the maintenance and simple good housekeeping of buildings — painting and cleaning, planting and enhancements — ways that will make the very best of the building.
“The exterior of a building is one of its biggest selling tools, so we are encouraging everyone to have pride in their buildings — it’s an investment in ourselves that can offer genuine rewards — not least of which is a sense of pride of place.”
Mr Dennehy said it is important to reward businesses who go the extra mile to maintain and preserve their premises.
“We need to keep the look of our building to a high standard and, in doing so, highlight Cork as a fantastic place to shop, work and live,” he said.