It is the headquarters for the Central Bank & Financial Services Authority of Ireland, the state banking authority which supervises and controls the operating standards of all banks and other financial institutions. Architects for the Central Bank were Sam Stephenson and Associates and its construction was quite controversial because of the demolition of some 18th century buildings and the fact that it exceeded its permitted height. Built between 1972 and 1978 its method of construction was unique in Dublin for that time.
The bronzed sculpture on the plaza is called 'Crann an Óir' or 'the Golden Tree' and symbolises that the wealth of Ireland is distributed to all and not locked up in banks vaults. It was commissioned by the Central Bank to mark Dublin’s year as European City of Culture in 1991. The work, executed in golden bronze and surrounded by elements in Wicklow granite is by sculptor Eamon O’Doherty