Gold Coast Cultural Precinct

Project Description

Located on a bend of the ‘broadwater’ that forms a penicula – which clasps a lake – we create a garden of surprises, yet with a simple basic organization. A central Plaza is flanked by the Theatres and the New Art Museum which, upon reaching the edge of the Lake, is proscribed by a Promenade that has continued the line of the Bridge.

The scheme is spiritually and physically a collage of events – inspired by the overlaying of creative experiences of every genre and every level of formality. Layering them first, with large forms that are then carved into by the release of caves and ‘scoops’. Entwined with paths, pads, meadows and thickets that lyrically engage with each other whilst at the same time enjoying the gentle audacity of local incidents: such as pockets that open up from hidden car parking, or hedges, ramps and arms that sometimes delve, sometimes encircle and sometimes even fly out over the water. Together they form the components of this varietous Garden.

Its landscaped palette of soft forms parries with the built language of curves that nonetheless have a serious task : to create shelter and shade in the bright environment of Gold Coast (and shelter in its periods of heavy rain), as well as intriguing those who wait or benefit from the serendipity of coincidences and chance acquaintance. For many of us, the odd cocktail reception on the one hand or the cinema queue on the other hardly make for a full cultural experience ! So here we consciously create dedicated internal spaces that continue the character of the exterior and consciously delight in an exuberance of ‘sitting-out’ spaces, balconies and vistas – both extant and discrete.
Around this are woven a variety of conditions.

The Plaza, Promenade and grassed Pads are surface layers that contain Parking and Servicing rooms and reveal large areas of cheap sheltered space around their edges: which become the natural place for creative workshops, random events and experimental work. There are also ‘activity walls’ : simple armatures that can also facilitate ad-hoc events. The complex is peppered with a variety of small structures or ‘kiosks’, and ranging from small gallery pavilions down to a simple ‘soapbox’ stand, creating another layer of the ‘collage’Its ‘Garden’ quality is literally reinforced : existing trees are augmented by the creation of thickets that articulate the character of the place and also reveal hidden incidents such as Pavilions.





Location: Queensland, Australia

Client: City of Gold Coast

Budget: $ 300,000,000 AUD

Status: Shortlisted for 2nd Stage

Joint Venture Teams: VOGT, DBI,

Consultants: Bollinger, Max Fordham, Theatreplan, ARUP, Bruce Munro, Andre Tammes

Design Team: Sir Peter Cook, Gavin Robotham, Ting-Na Chen, Tim Culverhouse, Jenna Al-Ali, Yang Yu, Ashley Munday, Fatemeh Ghasemi, Hongdi Li, Michael Bugelli, Breanna Mcneill, Daniel Swan, Dhruvin Shah, Lavinia Marcu



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