Located just over 50 miles (approximately 80 kilometers) south of Sydney, the design of Wollongong Central proudly reflects the natural beauty and rich culture of the region, creating a renewed social heart and retail destination that fuses architecture, art and culture.
Inspired by a desire to do more than simply create a building, the project becomes pivotal in creating a truly catalytic urban transformation for Wollongong. The built form creates a three-level "public street" that connects the northern and southern parts of the city. This connection allows the building to be permeable on many levels and knits together both existing and future parts of the city, making connections possible far beyond the built form.
The city of Wollongong is characterized by a unique dichotomy—on one hand, it is perceived as being a tough and gritty place defined solely by its history as a steel town. On the other hand, it's viewed as a rich, almost achingly beautiful destination held tightly between the Illawarra mountain range and the Pacific Ocean. These two contrasting elements define the architecture of Wollongong Central. A jagged and rough outer shell reflects the grit, while a warm, sensual interiorscape reflects the beauty.
In addition to creating space for 80 new retailers, much of the center is dedicated to food and the role it plays in Wollongong's culture. The ground floor houses a grocery store and fresh food precinct that embodies the visual overload of street markets and the eclectic melting pot of items found in the family kitchen. The street level houses alfresco dining options that respond to the life of the street and the city. And the upper level veranda houses a light-filled food court featuring window boxes that perch over the street and giant opening doors (like big eyelids) that tilt open to provide fresh air and connections to outside.
- 2015 Popular Choice Winner, Shopping Center category - Architizer A+ Awards
- 2015 Judge's Choice Winner, Shopping Center category - Archizer A+ Awards
- 2015 National Award for Architecture, Commercial category - Australian Institute of Architects (AIA)
- 2015 Architecture Award, Commercial Architecture category - Australian Institute of Architects (AIA) New South Wales chapter
- 2015 Architecture Award, Urban Design category - Australian Institute of Architects (AIA) New South Wales chapter
- 2015 Commendation, Colorbond Award for Steel Architecture - Australian Institute of Architects (AIA) New South Wales chapter
- 2015 International Association of Lighting Design (IALD) Award - Australian Institute of Architects (AIA) New South Wales chapter
- Type of Construction: Expansion
- Professional Services: Architecture, Interior Design
- Project Components: Alfresco Dining, Anchor Retailers, Boutique Retailers, Community Space, Food Court, Lounge, Public Art
- Project Type: Lifestyle, Retail Center
- Related Projects: Architecture, Retail & Mixed-Use
- Related Links:
- Wollongong Central Development Receives National Award from Australian Institute of Architecture
- Wollongong Central Wins Four NSW Architecture Awards
- CNN Features Wollongong Central Development
- The GPT Group’s Wollongong Central Development Wins Two Architizer A+ Awards
- Wollongong Central a hometown dream for architect Susanne Pini
- Thousands turn out for Wollongong Central opening
- "Local Girl Makes Good" by Susanne Pini on BLiNK