A single line connects all facilities of the Canberra arboretum creating a belvedere overlooking the garden. On arrival, the initial experience of the Belvedere denies the visitor the full extent of the Arboretum and its views until they have passed through the portal.
After this point the pathway splits, with the administration, community and commercial activities winding towards the north and the bonsai display areas wrapping along the contour south. The Belvedere path allows a partially shaded promenade along its 280m length with streams of water following it.
By introducing the buildings as a series of pavilions along a pathway, the overall scale of the development is reduced and the buildings are read as smaller elements against the landscape. Viewed from afar, the Belvedere appears as an elongated form below the ridgeline as it mirrors the contour line. The Belvedere is made with a small palette of materials, walls are corten sheet steel that are either left open, enclosed by glass walls or camouflage-type shade cloth roof. The rusting surface of the corten steel sits comfortably within the color palette of the national capital’s bushland setting.
Location: Canberra, ACT Australia -35.292467, 149.064581
Design Team: Thierry Lacoste, David Stevenson, Sergio Corona, Amelia Holiday, Joe Tang, Jane Bober
Landscape architect: Anton James Design
Photography / images: Lacoste+Stevenson Architects