The appeal for funds for the new library was wide-ranging, and in the great tradition of universities looking for funds, Trinity turned towards its alumni with 11,000 copies of the pamphlet Extension of the College Library: An appeal to our graduates printed and sent to graduates in 1957.
The main image above shows a detail from that booklet, subtitled “How the new building might look”. It’s a very different realisation of what would be appropriate for the space that eventually housed the Berkeley – but it’s easy to see why, nestled between the Old Library and the Museum Building, this might be thought the appropriate tack to take.
However, after the appointment of a panel of assessors to judge the international architectural competition, a different decision emerged:
Some were for playing safe with a neo-Georgian pastiche. But it was pointed out that the Museum Building was as representative of the nineteenth century as the Old Library was of the eighteenth, and that modern architecture could be good as well as bad. In the end no restriction was placed on exterior design or materials.
J.V. Luce, Trinity College Dublin: The First 400 Years.