A collaborative competition entry between SJB and lahznimmo, the submission proposed a new civic and community heart for the city of Parramatta. Situated in the centre of the newly developing Parramatta Square, the project brief was for new Civic, Library, and Community and Cultural Facilities, as well as ideas for the adaptive re-use of the existing Parramatta Town Hall.
The new civic building is an important investment for the people of Parramatta and the approach was to acknowledge a past while proposing a future. The design sought to hold its own within an emerging tussle of corporate towers, to provide scale, personality and presence to the collective ‘we’.
The proposal envisioned the building as a natural extension of the public domain of Parramatta Square and proposed a ‘Civic Lounge Room’ as the heart of the design – a grand public outdoor room with a tempered environment that provides a transition from Parramatta Square to the programmed interior of the building.
The ‘Civic Lounge Room’ reaches up through the building as a naturally lit and ventilated atrium. Four light scoops reflect pools of natural light directly to the south facing ground plane. Within the depth of the building the scoops link the floors, and at night read as colourful and iconic lanterns.