This overall project was specifically conceived to provide a community meeting point to focus and reinvigorate the residents of a depressed suburb which had been in steady decline for 30 plus years. Many residents of this suburb are elderly and due to lack of transportation seldom left their homes, hence community interaction was poor. The additional aim of the project was to have the elderly and young be involved in community based sports and activities to invigorate, inspire, and bond fellow citizens.The client requested a facility that would provide a modern and striking aesthetic focal point for the community.
The requirement of minimising consumption of resources for heating, ventilation and lighting was to be incorporated into the design. The fabric shape with central ring provided for heat to rise and escape– when the large glazed doors are opened a natural draft is created which significantly cools the bowling green area. The tilt up slab walls and large concrete apron of significant thermal mass heated by the sun during the day, provide for re-radiated heating in the cool winter evenings. Highly translucent fabric allows for natural light to evenly illuminate the bowling green during the day hence negating the use of lighting with low energy LED up-lights used at night to evenly light the reflective fabric surface, eliminating shadows and areas of indifferent light levels to the playing surface. The use of a large span tension membrane structure provided the “nucleus” from project inception through to final design.