RFW CEO, Lindsay Cane, said “Our vision is to deliver a beautifully integrated health and wellbeing “campus” that is inclusive, open and innovative. One that draws different people and local businesses together as a community to support our work of bringing vulnerable country kids to the beach to receive specialist health services while enjoying the warm hospitality of the local community.”

“We chose to partner with Glenn and Angelo as they represent iconic, accomplished architectural talent for an iconic site. Not only are they globally acclaimed, but Glenn, as a formal local, intimately knows the micro-climate, light and landscape of Manly.”

Royal Far West Campus.
Photo: Angelo Candalepas, Glenn Murcutt AO and Lindsay Cane AM. (Photo: Royal Far West)

Mr Murcutt said that he was honoured to accept the commission and that he was excited to work on the project. He explained that he is aware of RWF’s great service and recent challenges since he grew up in Clontarf and attended the former Manly Boys High School.

“By opening up the site, Angelo and I intend to deliver on RFW’s inspired vision of a wellbeing campus that will not only help secure RFW’s future in a highly responsible way, but also allow the charity to grow and help more and more country children.”

“We are also aligned with RFW in that we see this commission as a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to give back to Manly by supporting local jobs and existing businesses and improving the Manly visitation experience. By rejuvenating the southern portion of this site, we intend to unlock its great potential.”

Murcutt and Candalepas will work with RFW to design the campus, which may also include residential, retail and commercial opportunities, as well as co-locating opportunities for organisations that align with RFW’s values. 

Mr Candalepas said that he and Murcutt both “feel a deep responsibility for RFW and Manly and their shared history,” adding that they are both nervous and excited about the project. 

Regarding the design, Mr Candalepas commented that “[the] collaboration can be imagined as something able to produce extraordinary outcomes but there is a need for a reticence in the approach, a need for a quietness and a deeper need for understanding essential parts of the landscape.”

Established in 1924, the RFW connects children living in rural areas to the healthcare and support that they need. Ms Cane explains that the RFW is expanding rapidly, growing ten-fold in the last 10 years. With the RFW expected to grow and to support more children, this headquarters will expand the RFW’s footprint, and is expected to future-proof the RFW for the next 100 years.

Ms Cane said, “Glenn and Angelo will now work with us to design a concept that works wonderfully well for RFW and brings much pride to the local community. Community members and stakeholders are already engaged in the process and this will continue over the next few months.”

In a Q&A session, the RFW has estimated that initial concepts for the campus masterplan will be exhibited in 2020. Subject to approval, the construction work may take two to three years, with the new campus possibly being operational by mid-2024. RFW will select a developer/partner at an appropriate time.

Cover Photo: One of the buildings used by RFW on South Steyne Manly. (Photo: Nick-D via Wikimedia Commons / CC BY-SA 4.0)