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Makers' Workshop, Burnie, Tasmania, Australia

Wednesday 30 Jun 2010

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Photos: Brett Boardman 
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Award Entry

Makers' Workshop is a hub for creative paper production, local artisans and a celebration of the region's history 

Makers’ Workshop on the coast of Australia’s southern-most State of Tasmania is a major investment by the regional industrial town of Burnie (pop. 20,000) in their post-industrial future. Burnie’s history is inextricably linked to large scale industries and port services, including a massive pulp and paper mill. Recently the town has forged a reputation for creative, quality paper products, including local initiative Creative Paper. Burnie’s rural heritage, as a gateway to Tasmania’s north-west farming lands, displayed in a 'Pioneer Museum', was proposed to be combined with the creative enterprise in a visitor centre containing both memory of the past and speculation about the future. Given this was the first significant cultural investment in the town for decades; TERROIR pursued the idea of Makers’ Workshop as a 'living room' for the people of Burnie.

A five spoke diagram is centred on the central orientation hub – the living room - featuring items from the museum’s collection. Each spoke houses a different function orientated toward a different aspect of the city and landscape: back of house, paper making workshop, multi-purpose exhibition/theatre, café and a combined retail / gallery space.

The building is contextually part of the collection of industrial objects along the coast, re-imagined as a set of giant 'toys.' Maker’s is a lighthouse perched above the beach, a sentinel for passing ships and locals, with the polycarbonate cladding providing an ever-changing façade. The interior ‘plays’ on the shipping containers and large portside woodchip pile, via lime-stained composite timber lining to the central ‘living room’. Materials, finishes and systems were selected for their contribution to a sustainable future, including alternate power sources, automated controls, web-based monitoring of energy consumption and performance, and rainwater harvesting.

The 1,500 sq m project’s completion in November 2009 was a remarkable 15 months from the initial briefing, largely due to the strong and clear vision for the project and its ownership by all stakeholders and participants.

Key Facts

Status Completed
Value 0(m€)
Were you involved in this scheme?
Terroir Pty Ltd

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