The design comprises an arched base covering a basketball court and steps for seating. A large park atop this base provides opportunities for play and relaxation. A tower over the community recreational base accommodates car parking spaces and A-grade offices. The carpark can also be used to hold community events, while the rest of the tower allows for community meetings spaces as well as rooftop areas for dining and entertainment.
“Think of it as a building with two characters – the low-rise section has space for play, performance, markets and music. In the main building, there is commercial space, community meeting area as well as a roof top venue with stunning views for dining and entertainment,” described Penrith Mayor Ross Fowler.
“It is an innovative response to the need for parking, extra jobs, recreational facilities and entertainment venues in the Penrith CBD,” said Cr Fowler.
The project’s environmental aspects include bike parking and electric vehicle charging stations, while the greenery in the gardens provide community and environmental benefits.
“The winning design – by architects Durbach Block Jaggers – not only fulfils Council’s planning goals of creating a liveable, sustainable city but provides an example for future developers to follow,” said Cr Fowler, adding that “[Penrith City Council and Durbach Block Jaggers] have shown that innovative buildings are possible, and there is no longer any excuse for simple concrete boxes.”
The design was a collaboration between Durbach Block Jaggers, Sue Barnsley Design, Right Angle Studio and SGS Economics and Planning. The proposal was unanimously chosen by the special selection panel.
Construction is expected to start in the second quarter of 2020, with an estimated completion in the first quarter of 2022.
Cover Image: The winning design for the Penrith Soper Place Office and Carpark Design Competition combined car parking spaces, commercial offices and community open spaces for recreation and meetings/events. (Image: Durbach Block Jaggers)