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Westport’s Sentinel standing proud

WESTPORT added to its list of national accolades this week, with the town’s ‘Sentinel’ sculpture and the surrounding ‘public realm’ space being named as the winner of the People’s Choice Award in The Royal Institute of the Architects of Ireland (RIAI) Irish Architecture Awards 2016.
The win was announced in the evening 21/6/16  (Tuesday), much to the delight of Achill-based sculptor Ronan Halpin and Mayo County Council’s architect with responsibility for Westport, and the Sentinel project, Simon Wall.
The Sentinel was commissioned through a national competition to celebrate Westport winning The Irish Times Best Place to Live in Ireland competition.
The finished piece was proudly unveiled last year by US Ambassador to Ireland, His Excellency Mr Kevin O’Malley, whose grandparents are from Westport.
‘The Sentinel’ was among 50-plus projects shortlisted for this year’s RIAI People’s Choice Awards. Now in its ninth year, the popular RIAI Public Choice Award gives the public the opportunity to have their say by voting for their favourite shortlisted project.
This year’s awards received 180 entries – the highest in five years – across 17 categories, with 52 shortlisted in Best Commercial, Best Educational and Best Health Building, Best House, Best Housing and Best House Extension, Best Public Building, Best Cultural Project, Best Leisure, Best Public Space/Urban Design, Best International Project, Best Sustainable Project, Best Conservation and Best Universal Design.
Speaking after he was notified of the success, Simon Wall said he was delighted that the project had received such backing, and that the win is testament to sculptor Ronan Halpin and the many people who had worked hard on the project.

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