Parramatta Civic Centre
As part of the Parramatta Square redevelopment, the consortium of DesignInc, Lacoste + Stevenson and Manuelle Gautrand Architecture (France) won an international competition to design the Parramatta Civic Centre in 2016.
Conceived as a landmark civic building, it will herald Sydney’s second largest CBD with a prismatic glass envelope extending over the historic sandstone Town Hall building.
Architecturally, the Centre divides into bands of stacked crystalline blocks, angled irregularly to become vertical at the northeast, producing a futuristic form of civic spire – a transparent glass fin for digital media projections.
The abstract form follows the sun’s trajectory. Inside will include a state-of-the-art library, council chambers, meeting rooms for community groups, a roof garden and visitor experience centre, with each level publicly accessible.
Parramatta City Council
PROJECT LEADERSHIPRichard Does
Lacoste + Stevenson with Manuelle Gautrand Architecture
Innovations in glass technology will bring the complex façade to life. Each horizontal band of crystalline glass blocks represents one building level, with the lower zone shaped by the public arena, welcoming pedestrians with a sheltering cantilever above the entrances.
A mix of indoor and outdoor spaces will be created by deleting glass blocks from the overall volume, and integrating garden terraces. Protecting interiors from the sun will be a series of external screens, allowing outlooks while diffusing a beautiful light inside.
The heritage of Parramatta’s sandstone Town Hall, built in 1881 in the Victorian Free Classical Style, will be preserved, while the new Centre embraces technology and transparency in government. It will communicate to the public with event notices, local cultural achievements and art displays broadcast via large-scale integrated LED screens.
Design Competition Jury, 5 Parramatta Square
The jury unanimously endorses this iconic scheme. It will form an undeniably modern interface with Parramatta’s history, and deliver a 21st century solution within the City of Parramatta Council’s modern smart city metropolis.
Richard Does, Director
We’re emulating movement within the building form, creating a contextual volume that respects existing scale at the western extremity, but elsewhere reads as a mobile and dynamic shape, tracking the path of the sun.
David Stevenson, Lacoste + Stevenson
It will be a canvas for artistic expression in a way we haven't seen before in a public building in Australia.