MODE creates a meaningful place to congregate and reflect on the past
The Bargara Cultural and Community Centre in Australia is a Q150 project, celebrating 150 years of independence for the State of Queensland and serves as an important landmark which highlights and showcases the community, culture and history of Bargara.
Australian design practice MODE DESIGN was selected to devise a new community centre which utilises the site and its unique surrounds to house and present cultural artefacts, host performances and provide essential amenities for the local community as a gathering and congregation space.
The centre comprises a number of flexible internal and external multipurpose / functional spaces designed to be used independently or in various combinations. Glazed operable walls allow the internal and external spaces to merge seamlessly, as the activity dictates and is dependent on User Groups.
Significant cultural and historic icons have been incorporated throughout the entire design to specifically address the design brief given by the Client. Visitors entering the naturally lit foyer are greeted by turtle tracks, a hallmark of the region’s culture and tourism. The tracks lead to a courtyard designed to propagate cultural expression. External walls of interchangeable screens allow local artists, cultural, community and school groups to display art or sculptural works in any medium. While it serves as a backdrop to the courtyard, the screens also engage passersby as an interchangeable dynamic external fabric.
The deck leading to the courtyard and main verandah is constructed of a hardwood species which was once the lifeblood of an expansive local timber industry. Dedicated areas of courtyard hardscaping have been allocated, amongst sculptural turtles, to the local indigenous people for painting stories of 'the dreamtime'. Adjacent and directly accessible from the courtyard is a native bush tucker garden.
Leading from the courtyard and native bush tucker garden, a dedicated common area has been built to include a functioning cooking pit / hangi as a reflection of the original ‘Kanaks’ who once worked in the canefields. A traditional Kanak wall and the neighbouring canefields frame this congregation space.
The Bargara Cultural and Community Centre has been successfully designed to provide the local community with an outlet to reflect on its past and influence its dynamic way of life.