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Flinders Street Station is remade as Australia’s finest station. The proposal by Wardle and Grimshaw is finely tuned to its context responding precisely to the different conditions of the surrounding riverbank, Federation Square, and the city.

The station’s main concourse is reorientated to sit alongside and within the historic fabric of the existing Administration Building, bringing it back into public use. This centralises the station functions and optimises platform access to accommodate future patronage demand.

The strategic decision to relocate the concourse unlocks the eastern edge of the station precinct, creating an extraordinary new covered public place opposite Federation Square. Above is a new Design Museum for Melbourne, with an expansive raking soffit opening up toward Federation Square. Important heritage components are revitalised, critical existing view lines of historic built fabric are protected and new buildings orient and rake to frame new vistas.

A new civic topography along the Yarra River enmeshes architecture and landscape where double height brick vaults, retail tenancies and station entry points, make a coherent new river scape.  The river landscape extends into the station precinct; a biodiversity ribbon widening into a new city park that extends over the rail tracks. Joining Flinders Street with the Yarra, it creates vibrant new gathering place for Melbourne.

Stefan Mee, Principal at Wardle, says "We have created a shimmering reflective surface suspended over an extraordinary new public space opposite Federation Square. It becomes part of a series of public spaces in Melbourne which focus on the ceiling including Leonard French's at the NGV and Mahony and Griffin's at the Capitol Theatre."

  • Traditional Custodians Wurundjeri Woi-wurrung people
  • Collaborators Wardle in collaboration with Grimshaw and Room 11
  • Client Major Projects Victoria
  • Location Melbourne, Victoria
  • Procurement Competition entry
  • Project Duration 2012 – 2013

The vertical rhythm of the historic facade is transformed along the length of the concourse bridges to a new geometry on the riverbank. We are attempting to create a strong sense of gradual change as you leave the concourse and move toward the river. Materially, the new bridge canopies change from timber to reflective steel. Geometrically, they change from orthogonal rhythms to folded forms.

A new park, scaled for inhabitation, stretches over the rail lines. The elevated park is a new experience for Melbourne, framing views and creating a garden frontage for Melbourne’s new public building.

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