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Waverton Coal Loader
Experimental Art Centre

Waverton Coal Loader Revitalisation Project 

2015 Second Year Semester Two Design Studio Project 

Location: 2 Balls Head Drive, Waverton, NSW, 2060, Australia
Longitude & Latitude: 33.8432oS, 151.1943oE 

Balls Head Coal Loader located on the western coast of the Sydney harbour has one hundred years of coal loading history. Prior white settlement, the site was significant to the Gadigal tribe for whale hunting. Since the shutdown of the coal loading industry on Balls Head Reserve, a small portion of the coal loader was renovated into a public sustainability centre. While recognising the indigenous and industrial past of the site, the design seeks to revitalise the place with a new form of energy from the design of an “avant-garde” Experimental Art Foundation (EAF). The design approach to the EAF intends to restore the natural heritage of the site by speaking in the same language architecturally with the natural sandstones and reinforced concrete of the original coal loader. Inspired by the paintings of Eduardo Chillida, the idea of 'stereotomy' becomes the ‘parti’ of the project. Along with inspirations taken from the Indian stepwells, Carlo Scarpa and the blue grotto spaces in Italy, the design aims to celebrate the unique character of the Waverton Balls Head via spaces carved out of a solid matter. 

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