28 Sept 2022

Work on a transformative project for Laois town due this year

New life for historic Laois market house used as garage

Portarlington Market House, long used as a motor garage

Work on the refurbishment of the historic Market House building in the heart of Portarlington is due to get underway later this year.

Laois County Council is seeking a contractor to carry out the work in order to give the building a new lease of life.

They hired Robin Lee Architects to design meeting rooms, offices and useful spaces for the public in the old building which dates back to the 1740s.

A tender issued by Laois County Council seeks: “Expressions of Interest for the Refurbishment of the existing Market House building (approx. 240m² floor area) including new and refurbished windows and doors, new and refurbished external and internal wall finishes, floor finishes, ceiling finishes, roof structure repairs, new and repaired roof finishes, extended mechanical and electrical services and siteworks.”

The council was granted funding of €1.2 million in 2021 by the Department of Rural Affairs and Community Development for the project which includes the surrounds. It is hoped the building can once again become a focal point for the town and be used for meetings and exhibitions once the work is completed. 


Transformation of the building is central to the Portarlington Regeneration Strategy 2030. The key objectives of the strategy seek to develop a vision for Portarlington town centre with a focus on the historic Market House and Square, Main Street, Spa Street, and French Church Street. 

Investment in these areas aims to regenerate the town by increasing its attractiveness,  dealing with dereliction and improving pedestrian and public spaces. 

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