Brisbane Ferry Terminals: winner announced

August 4, 2011

Cox Rayner,Derlot and Aurecon win the design competition to rebuild Brisbane’s flood-damaged ferry terminals.

A design team from Cox Rayner architects, design studio Derlot and engineers Aurecon has won the competition to design a series of new ferry terminals for Brisbane.

The winning proposal is designed to create a strong connection between the river and the shoreline, with a simple concept combined with a clearly articulated function. The team’s proposal states: “It is a concept for a terminal distilled into essential ingredients, with those ingredients shaped to perform multiple roles physically, operationally and aesthetically to define Brisbane as Australia’s subtropical river city.”

Michael Rayner of Cox Rayner said of the team’s design: “it is our belief that the physical solution needs to be as simple as possible, that is, without complication in its response to future floods or potentially cyclones.”

The series of canopied terminals will enhance the experience of the CityCat, and prioritise the real and perceived safety of river travel by day and night. The terminals’ gangways are designed so that they can swivel depending on the direction of the current, so that in flood mode they do not collect debris.

The competition, organised by the Federal and Queensland Government, was launched in May as part of the drive to rebuild the city after it was ravaged by floods in January. The federal and state governments pledged $145 million to the project, and invited architects and designers from across the world to submit their proposals to the competition.

In June, three teams were shortlisted from a pool of 65 initial Expressions of Interest. Each shortlisted team included Brisbane-based architects, a factor which Queensland Premier Anna Bligh said would ensure the competition was driven by “strong and comprehensive local knowledge”.

Along with Cox Rayner, Derlot and Aurecon, two other teams were shortlisted: Second Nature Collaborative (Candalepas Associates, Richards and Spence, Owen and Vokes and Arup), and Shane Thompson Architects & LAT27 with Bill Short Engineers.

Second Nature Collaborative’s vision for the terminals engaged with the landscape of each location, reducing the use of hardscaping and taking full advantage of the existing landscape’s contours and ridges. Each terminal would be given its own identity according to the character, built form, ethnicity and topography of the neighbouring suburb.

The entry from Shane Thompson & LAT27 proposed a “design narrative that appraises the environment of the river, abstracts the landscape and hosts an emergent urban experience at the water’s edge”. The design features an adaptable, lightweight structure that would be easy to maintain and would bring together “a unique synthesis of landscape, riverscape, architectural and engineering”.

Entries were judged by a panel of experts from the Australian Institute of Architects and Urban Futures, chaired by former Queensland architect Professor Phillip Follent.

Cox Rayner, Derlot and Aurecon will now be appointed as consulting architects to the terminal rebuilding program. Construction on the eight terminals is expected to begin in October 2011.

  • Wow August 4th, 2011 8:12 am

    COX! Who’d ‘ave thought.

  • CaveArc August 4th, 2011 11:02 pm

    Gee. That was predictable.

  • Same old August 9th, 2011 2:36 am

    Question is, do you think Cox Rayner have the capacity to deliver such a complex project? Perhaps they should be in association with a safer pair of hands.

  • eric buhrs August 9th, 2011 9:02 pm

    well done cox!!…another inspiration design!

  • Ash August 22nd, 2011 7:36 am

    Wow…. hold on, it looks very similar to Yokohama Ferry Terminal in Japan…

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