Archinect
Niall Patrick Walsh

Niall Patrick Walsh

Belfast, IE

 

About 

Niall Patrick Walsh is a contributing writer for Archinect, covering news and feature pieces. Aside from writing, Niall is also an architect for BDP, one of the largest design + engineering firms in Europe. 

His interests encompass: 

  • Innovation in technology, construction, and materials.
  • Sustainability and circularity in design and construction.
  • The future of living including policies, methods, and visions for the future of housing. 
  • The future of the profession including the impact of artificial intelligence, new software, and the changing role of the architect.

Niall lives and works in Belfast, Ireland, but engages with architects and designers across the world. He’s even been on a podcast or two.

Between January 2017 and April 2020, he wrote and edited over 1000 articles for ArchDaily, where he served as a Senior Editor. He has also written for both the print and digital editions of Architecture Ireland (RIAI Journal), Ireland’s premier architecture magazine.

He has represented ArchDaily at events across Ireland, Italy, France, and China, and has interviewed leading architecture and design figures such as Carlo Ratti (Director, MIT Senseable City Lab), Winy Maas (Co-Founder, MVRDV), and the TED founder Richard Saul Wurman.

Niall holds a Masters in Architecture (Distinction) from Queen’s University Belfast, Northern Ireland, and is an architect at BDP (Building Design Partnership), one of the largest architecture firms in Europe. He previously worked as an architectural designer at the award-winning Architecture Initiative in London.

His design work has also been recognized internationally, including being awarded first place in the International Tube8x8x300 Contest in China in 2020.

In September 2021, he made the AJ100 New Talent List, recognizing up-and-coming architectural talent in the United Kingdom

Niall Patrick's Featured Articles on Archinect

Cooperatives: The Real Employee-Owned Firms?, Fri, May 6 '22

In a follow-up to our January 2022 feature on employee-owned architecture firms, we question if the Employee Stock Ownership Plan (ESOP) models which represent the majority of employee-owned architecture firms adequately fulfill a growing worker-led clamor for reform within the profession. For ...

Cooperatives: The Real Employee-Owned Firms?
 

The Impact of Ireland's Architects, from the Pritzker Prize to the White House, Thu, Mar 17 '22

Historically, Ireland's architects have punched above their weight on the world stage. Be it the White House in Washington D.C., innovative World Expo pavilions in New York, or Stirling Prize-winning buildings in the United Kingdom by Dublin-based Pritzker laureates, we explore how the ...

The Impact of Ireland's Architects, from the Pritzker Prize to the White House
 

America’s Public Housing is Burning, Fueled by Cold Indifference, Wed, Mar 9 '22

In early 2022, building fires at publicly-funded properties in the Bronx and Philadelphia claimed 29 lives. The facts and conditions surrounding the fires expose an ongoing failure by officials to provide and maintain a safe standard of housing for some of America's most vulnerable. However, the ...

America’s Public Housing is Burning, Fueled by Cold Indifference
 

Finding Value in Waste​: Japan’s​ Kamikatsu Zero Waste Center is a Temple to Material Reuse, Thu, Feb 3 '22

Today, building materials account for half of all solid waste generated worldwide every year. In response to mounting concerns over the impact of construction on the built environment, a growing number of architects and material scientists are investigating the potential for recycled materials to ...

Finding Value in Waste​: Japan’s​ Kamikatsu Zero Waste Center is a Temple to Material Reuse
 

A Guide to Employee-Owned Architecture Firms, by Those Who Have Made the Change, Mon, Jan 10 '22

Throughout 2020 and 2021, the world of work has been subject to a relentless evaluation, triggered by the COVID-19 pandemic. Conversations around remote working, asynchronous office hours, and workers’ wages have gained added agency, as almost all economic sectors seek to balance health and ...

A Guide to Employee-Owned Architecture Firms, by Those Who Have Made the Change
 

Does 3D Printed Architecture Have Real Potential? We Talk With an Architect About His Experience Designing and Building a 3D Printed House, Wed, Dec 15 '21

3D printing is older than you may think. The term was first coined in a 1984 patent, while the idea of generating 3D objects from 2D drawings dates back to sci-fi visions as early as 1945. Fast forward to today, and 3D printing has become a viable method of producing everything from medical stents ...

Does 3D Printed Architecture Have Real Potential? We Talk With an Architect About His Experience Designing and Building a 3D Printed House
 

Dystopia in the Desert: Expo 2020 Dubai Embodies Our Unsustainable Attitude Towards Urbanism, Fri, Nov 12 '21

In a confluence of events, the autumn of 2021 saw the opening of both the COP26 climate summit in Glasgow and Expo 2020 in Dubai. While COP26 is billed as "the last chance saloon" to save the planet, Expo 2020 Dubai is described by its organizers as "the most sustainable expo in the history ...

Dystopia in the Desert: Expo 2020 Dubai Embodies Our Unsustainable Attitude Towards Urbanism
 

The Architect's Power in Tomorrow's Energy Infrastructure, Mon, Oct 4 '21

The architecture of energy systems is undergoing a renaissance. As our ability to generate, consume, and store energy in a clean, sustainable way continues to accelerate, spurred by a heightened awareness of climate change, architects are steadily sculpting a new architecture to celebrate ...

The Architect's Power in Tomorrow's Energy Infrastructure
 

Can a Building Dream, Learn, and Hallucinate? A Conversation with Refik Anadol, Fri, Sep 24 '21

Refik Anadol has carved an eclectic career, rich with confluences. His work blurs the boundaries between art and science, the visible and invisible, the operational and emotional, the fleeting and permanent. The composition of this studio further demonstrates this confluence; housing artists ...

Can a Building Dream, Learn, and Hallucinate? A Conversation with Refik Anadol
 

Shenzhen: A City at a Crossroads in its Past and Future, Fri, Sep 10 '21

The past, present, and future narrative of Shenzhen offers rich ground for architectural thought. The megacity, which emerged from the remote Chinese countryside over 40 years, has captured the imagination of urbanists seeking to understand its rise, architects seeking to contribute to its lively ...

Shenzhen: A City at a Crossroads in its Past and Future
 

The Collapse of the WTC Twin Towers Heralded a Wave of Reforms To Building Codes, Wed, Sep 8 '21

It is now almost 20 years since the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center in New York were destroyed during a terrorist attack, killing 2,606 people within the two buildings. As is often the case following both natural and human-made disasters, the collapse of the Twin Towers prompted sweeping ...

The Collapse of the WTC Twin Towers Heralded a Wave of Reforms To Building Codes
 

A House of Cards: The Miami Condo Collapse Exposes a Dehumanized Mindset in the Built Environment, Tue, Aug 17 '21

On June 24th, 2021, the Champlain Towers South condo building in Surfside, Miami collapsed, killing 98 people. While the causes of the collapse are still under investigation, the building's history of structural deficiencies is likely to have played a part. The Champlain Towers collapse is only ...

A House of Cards: The Miami Condo Collapse Exposes a Dehumanized Mindset in the Built Environment
 

For Host Cities, the Olympics Are No Game, Tue, Aug 3 '21

With the 2020 Olympics underway in Tokyo, we reflect on the urban and environmental impacts of the Olympic Games on its host cities. Whether Rio 2016, Tokyo 2020, Paris 2024, or Los Angeles 2028, the Olympics suffer from a legacy of fragmenting existing urban environments, accelerating ...

For Host Cities, the Olympics Are No Game
 

For Affordable Housing, The Revolution Will Be Modularized, Wed, Jul 28 '21

Across the globe, the design and construction of affordable housing is failing to meet demand, leaving both low and middle income dwellers with little choice but to accept high costs, substandard conditions, or a move away from urban centers. This reality not only presents dangerous environmental ...

For Affordable Housing, The Revolution Will Be Modularized
 

The Venice Biennale Pressed Pause, While Everyone Else Changed the Game, Tue, Jun 29 '21

Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, the way we live, work, and interact has transformed. The architecture world has been forced to adapt in tandem, with our means of design, communication, and education all undergoing rapid changes. Though set against a tragic backdrop, this forced ...

The Venice Biennale Pressed Pause, While Everyone Else Changed the Game
 

Meet the Architects Designing Software to Fight Climate Change, Mon, Jun 14 '21

The 21st century has seen rapid advances in technology, allowing an ever-increasing portion of the architectural and urban planning process to move into digital space. At the same time, our understanding of the climate crisis and momentum to address it have also gathered pace. Responding to both ...

Meet the Architects Designing Software to Fight Climate Change
 

The Butterfly Effect: Retrofitting Low-Income Housing, Thu, May 27 '21

America's low-income housing stock is aging. The human health, social, economic, and environmental consequences of substandard housing is felt not just by their inhabitants, but by the general public. However, a growing number of architects, researchers, and policymakers are identifying a ...

The Butterfly Effect: Retrofitting Low-Income Housing
 

Smog City: The Fight Against Urban Air Pollution, Thu, May 13 '21

Around the world, cities and citizens continue to suffer from the effects of air pollution. While the COVID-19 pandemic ironically led to a temporary improvement in urban air quality, the status quo for the air we breathe in cities is bleak. In this article, we examine the prevalence, causes, and ...

Smog City: The Fight Against Urban Air Pollution
 

For What It’s Worth: Unpaid Overtime Among Future Architects, Wed, Apr 28 '21

Over recent months, a conversation about unpaid overtime has risen to the top of the United Kingdom’s architectural discourse, spurred by lobbying from the Future Architects Front. We took a closer look at how the latest debate began, what it uncovered about the prevalence of unpaid overtime in ...

For What It’s Worth: Unpaid Overtime Among Future Architects
 

Employment 

Archinect, Contributing Writer

Contributing writer, covering news and features. Topics of interest include:
-Innovation in technology, construction, and materials.
-Sustainability and circularity in design and construction.
-The future of living including policies, methods, and visions for the future of housing.
-The future of the profession including the impact of artificial intelligence, new software, the and changing role of the architect.

Apr 2021 - current
 

BDP.(Bulding Design and Partership Ltd), Dublin, IE, Architectural Designer

Part of a design team delivering some of the largest most consequential works of architecture across Ireland and the UK. Specialist interest in public, commercial, and education projects.

Responsibilities: Concept development, design development, production of design information, 3D modelling, client management and presentations, preparing documents for planning submission, coordinating with contractors and subconsultants.

Jul 2019 - current
 

ArchDaily, Santiago, CL, Senior Editor

Senior Editor, who delivered over 1000 articles on the past, present, and future of architecture.

Interviewed leading architectural figures, including Carlo Ratti (MIT), Winy Maas (MVRDV), Liam Young (Unknown Fields), and Richard Saul Wurman (Founder of TED).

Represented ArchDaily at events across Venice, Shenzhen, Nantes, Dublin.

Specialist interest in the connection between architecture and global flows of food, energy, water, and waste, as well as technology and innovations shaping the future of the built environment.

Mar 2018 - May 2020
 

Architecture Initiative, London, GB, Architectural Designer

Part of a design team delivering high-quality education, mixed-use, and residential projects across London and the UK.

Responsibilities: Concept development, design development, production of design information, 3D modelling, client management and presentations, preparing documents for planning submission, coordinating with contractors and subconsultants.

Mar 2016 - Mar 2017
 

Clague Architects LLP, Canterbury, GB, Architectural Designer

Part of a design team delivering high-quality education, mixed-use, residential, and masterplan projects across the UK.

Responsibilities: Concept development, design development, production of design information, 3D modelling, client management and presentations, preparing documents for planning submission, coordinating with contractors and subconsultants.

Jun 2015 - Mar 2016
 

Education 

Queen's University of Belfast, Belfast, GB, MArch, Architecture

Graduated with MArch (Distinction) from Queen's University Belfast, frequently ranked one of the top 5 architecture schools in the UK.

Design projects explored architecture's connection with data, technology, decentralised systems, and food production.

Humanities thesis focused on architecture's connection with activism, protest, and social change in the context of the European refugee crisis

Final year thesis focused on the potential for urban farming systems to transform the built, natural, social, and economic landscape of Belfast, Northern Ireland.

Sep 2017 - Jun 2019
 

Queen's University of Belfast, Belfast, GB, Bachelors, Architecture

Graduated 2:1 in the BSc (Architecture) at Queen's University Belfast

Sep 2012 - Jun 2015
 

Awards 

Tube8x8x300 International Design Competition, 1st Place

‘Food for Thought’ puts forward the vision of urban farming as a tool for architectural, social, and economic transformation. The evacuation tunnel, once ignored by the city, is activated by a landscape which produces, celebrates, and showcases the connection between us and what we eat.

The scheme’s design centers on a hexagonal module, replicating to form an arched “tunnel within a tunnel”. Constructed either by hand or machine, the 3D-printed hexagonal modules become the skeleton structure for a radical, forward-looking urban farming initiative.

2020
 

Skills