TAG Architects and iredale pedersen hook architects, architects in association.
The Courthouse design interprets local physical qualities to capture the uniqueness of Kununurra in a building that is dignified and welcoming yet establishes a sense of gravitas.
The design re-introduces the value of the regional courthouse with a civic, landmark building that will represent the local community and promote the role of the courthouse as a centre for dispute resolution. Kununurra's geographic uniqueness is visible from the air and particularly visual when moving around the town. The contrast of the natural landform embracing the ordered plantations and buildings is especially unique, combined with the close proximity of Kelly's Knob and Hidden Valley. Both of these natural landmarks are visible from the site; they visually and experientially connect the community and visitors to Kununurra in a manner that is respectful and sophisticated.
The roof form of the building creates an immediate dialogue while creating a variety of volumes that respond to the programme requirements for the interior spaces.
Sunshade devices control heat load whilst modifying the experience of the interior space. On the north-western facade the roof form folds down incorporating large panels perforated with the local landscape. A large external sunshade (brise-soleil) on the south-eastern facade follows the undulating form of the roof, protecting the glass while changing the scale of the interior, creating spaces that are intimate or communal. Materials used reflect the layered and fractured nature of the landscape and introduce a materiality that is absolutely unique to Kununurra.
Stone paved public foyers are lined with horizontal bands of natural timber and local artwork, creating an engaging and contextual interior immediately identifiable with the local community.
Courtrooms also employ natural timber linings but create a formal sense of occasion. Always connected to natural light courtrooms are provided with controlled outlooks into courtyards or distant views.