Timber Design Awards
Kelburn Cable Car Terminus Upgrade
Concept Design Idea – Underlying the development of the scheme is the notion that the Terminus is both a transport hub and an important node in the network of the Cable Car/Botanic Garden’s visitor precinct.
The arrival, discovery and departure pathways and view shafts are explored and given an architectural form. The scheme also addresses the experience of movement and connections at this node, together with the existing platform layout, site planning and the precinct landform.
The scheme articulates the ideas of movement and shelter with the development of a structural system of laminated timber portal frames. The portal frames are progressively rotated as they descend the site. This enhances the drama of movement that is experienced through both arrival and departure.
A simply-constructed roof layer over the portals describe the resulting elegant twist in the roof form.
The primary structural element, the laminated timber portal, allows for a clear architectural language and form, off-site prefabrication, and a cost-effective structural system.
Material selection: The timber portals are selected as a structural material to support the roof and are the key conceptual idea. The portals are Drydens Birch stained laminated Treated Pine. The construction of an enclosure with a series of timber ribs echoes the construction methods of the early cable car carriages, and also as seen in boat building methodology. The timber portals where also selected for their sustainability qualities, have approximately half the embodied energy as steel.