Arthurs Seat Amenities Block
Submitted by: FOURSIGHT ARCHITECTS (James Course)
Contact the designer: www.fourarch.com.au
A carefully designed amenities block with a refined focus on inclusivity, accessibility and sustainability.
The Whole Story
The facility is a high profile venue, due to the close proximity of the new refurbished Arthur's Seat Gondola. The projected visitation for the Gondola is 160,000 visitors per annum, these visitors come from all corners of the globe and have a broad range of requirements to suit their basic human needs. The design catered for not only cultural differences and able bodied users but also accommodates for people with complex and multiple disabilities. Parks Victoria being the client brought a strict brief to the table with not only the inclusive aspects but also the environmentally sensitive design principles, considering resource use, embodied energy, life cycle costs, durability, longevity and salvage-ability. The design catered for these needs with the inclusion of rainwater harvesting for re-use, solar energy use and sewerage treatment facilities onsite. Parks Victoria is committed to providing contemporary facilities to encourage tourism and enhanced visitor experiences thereby showcasing landmarks, and in doing so, design requirements must compliment the natural settings. This inclusive facility allows for male and female squat pans, standard and ambulant WC's, separate accessible toilet, shower, adjustable height table, hoist and room to facilitate a carer with ease of access being the focal point of the design. The buildings orientation maximised natural light and ventilation as well as safety and visibility for its users. From a design perspective, the roof is designed to showcase the marine plywood ceiling (sourced from plantation hoop pine) as visitors drive up the prestigious Arthurs Seat Road to the summit. Marine plywood was selected for its natural durability and low emission properties with shadow line joints to further articulate the natural look of marine plywood. As the site is susceptible to extreme weather conditions it made sense to use a high performance eco timber that would outperform standard hardwood for exposed areas of the amenities block. The decision was made to use a 50% reclaimed hardwood (40% of other recycled materials) product known as permatimber for its sustainable, low maintenance, eco-friendly and natural timber look for both screening and wall cladding. Currently, the project has been awarded with second place in total facilities 2017 Australia’s Best Bathroom competition for its environmentally sensitive design traits and the My Travel Research 2017 Toilet Tourism Awards Best Accessible Toilet award.
Photographs by Kristian Gehradte