Beating out high-profile Queensland entries, the Palmwoods Town Square will now represent our state in the Australian Institute of Landscape Architects' National Award rivalling entries from New South Wales, Western Australia, South Australia, Victoria and the Australian Capital Territory.
The Palmwoods Town Square received Queensland's Award of Excellence in the Civic Design category. The accolade was awarded to the Sunshine Coast Council, local design studio POMO, and community engagement specialists Co-Design. SMEC were also involved in the design of the project.
As a township with a proud heritage and creative identity, the Sunshine Coast City Council engaged award-winning, multidisciplinary design studio POMO to help collaboratively design a place that authentically reflected the community in which it existed.
POMO founder and design director, Stephen Burton, said his company was selected for their their ability to translate community identity into customised urban design elements that unified people's experience to the place.
Mr Burton said it was important to involve the community as part of the process and engagement with passionate locals unearthed additional stories and insights from historians and cultural groups which manifested into the award-winning design.
"The design needed to be responsive, sensitive and appropriate for the area in which it existed", said Mr Burton.
The design features furniture built from locally-sourced heritage railway sleepers, handmade blacksmith components, signage evoking local cultural stories, artistic balustrades and handrails and a table crafted from local 120-year old blue gum sustainably sourced.
The area has improved pedestrian pathways and connected previously disconnected precincts into the town. The end result is a beautiful community space that can be used for festivals, celebrations and casual family gatherings.
Reflecting aspirations of the local people and delivering on their needs, the town square is a place for community specifically. We are extremely happy with the outcomes of this project and the way it has been embraced by the community. It is clear testament to why it is competing against Australia's best at the national awards", he says.
The Australian Institute of Landscape Architects' national program recognises the work of top landscape architects and designers in the country and their contributions to the design of built and natural environments.
Palmwoods Town Square will compete against national competitors on October 11 th at the awards dinner being held on the Gold Coast.
To read more about the Australian Institute of Landscape Architects' Awards: www.aila.org.au
For more information on the Palmwoods Project and POMO: http://pomo.com.au/casestudies/Palmwoods-Placemaking.html