Pentridge Pavilion

Client: Shayher Group
Location: Coburg, Victoria
Co-ordinates: 37°44’14.3”S 144°58’07.3”E
Status: 3rd Place Competition Entry
Year: 2017
Project Team: BoardGrove Architects, Hip V. Hype Sustainability
Images: BoardGrove Architects
Words: BoardGrove Architects

This new pavilion is a meeting point for visitors and residents of the Pentridge Prison site in Coburg. Its crown-like form creates a striking centre piece to the piazza whilst its multi directional layout activates all sides of its immediate context.

The building is circular in form referencing the footprints of the former panopticon structures within the prison walls. Internally the spaces follow the cartwheel geometries of the panopticon. Externally the building has a rhythm of facets with a pitched roof profile relating it to the existing pitched roof and gable end other heritage buildings.

On entry site information and maps are displayed. The entry space opens up into a large round room with high ceilings. The round room has space for artwork, multimedia presentations and a large bookcase with display cabinet. Complimenting the display area is a cafe which opens to the Piazza on the western side. The information space is flexible and could host a variety of activities including meetings, dining experiences, temporary exhibitions, presentations, talks and screenings.

The pavilion’s facade is clad in a polished terrazzo tile finish; heavy like the nearby buildings yet contrasting in colour and texture. Deep reveals to the windows and entrances give the building a solidity and thickness found in prison buildings whilst providing shade to the internal spaces. A decorative floor of recycled bluestone flows out into the piazza. The dark toned context of the prison allows the light coloured pavilion to become the focal point of the site, an uplifting object amongst the checkered horrors of the sites past.