Inspired by its surrounds, the Brighton Marketplace will be a landmark precinct for the coastal town in Western Australia. It forms a central connection that develops a strong sense of community and identity; one that encourages both a mix of intensive uses and treatments compatible with the nearby train station.
Landmark site and Main Street.
Urban planning and retail design projects such as this are by definition a tangled web of multiple players; Consultants; Councils; Developers; Retailers; and community interest groups. The challenge is to find a solution for all parties. It’s the Architects job to recognise and facilitate any consultation required. Brighton Marketplace is a shining example of such collaboration.
An iconic identity has been created for Brighton, one that has been stimulated by its beach surrounds and delivered in contemporary style. Signature vibrant blades of colour contrast stretches of white, climbing green wall planting and organic recycled timber create a fun, interactive atmosphere throughout the centre developing a unique sense of place.
The project was not immune to challenges for all stakeholders and there were several key issues that required working through:
1. Council’s vision for the Brighton District Centre Activity Centre structure plan needed to be satisfied whilst meeting the commercial requirements of the client.
2. The evolution of High Street/Main Street, and the positioning of Main Street to line up with the principal pedestrian connection in the structure plan.
3. The location of the Town Square; there where differing programs and priorities to be evaluated (train station, main street and car park entries).
4. Council’s requirements for landmark buildings on predetermined sites as per structure plan to be met whilst achieving a commercial planning outcome for the Client.
5. Activating three sides of the development with a conventional type shopping centre whilst addressing appropriate screening of loading and back of house areas.
The project required many interactions with Client and Council to find the correct balance of commercial requirements versus urban outcomes.
Various schemes were presented to the Client that looked at the positioning of Main Street. The introduction of a curve to the street, better aligned the principal pedestrian connections whilst still creating enough highly leasable retail area for the development to be commercially viable. This open air linkage is utilised for slow flowing traffic and pedestrian connections. The Town Square and Main Street connection provides a definitive sense of arrival to the centre for the visitor, and ensures a focused and high activity atmosphere, a place that will also generate activity outside core business hours.
In locating the Town Square at the core of the development, the car park entry of the shopping centre is integrated with Main Street and the principle pedestrian links through the shopping centre to the nearby train station. Both entries are marked by large signature statements creating distinctive focal points and ease of access.
Introducing many ESD initiatives and high level architectural outcomes for the landmark building facades has seen the project meet commercially cost effective price points.
The centre is oriented to allow passive natural light in from the south facing side. Utilising natural day lighting in this way reduces the need for artificial lighting, reducing energy expenditure. This passive orientation measure also allows for partial natural ventilation. The extensive landscaping, climbing green wall planting and beach shrubbery enhances the natural environment within the surrounds of the site.
With elements such as the curved feature colour/landscape wall we were able to address the loading/back of house and landmark zones through activation and interest. Similarly the rear/car park of the Main Street retail and commercial buildings is activated via the introduction of organic patterned perforation as well as shielding west facing glazing from the harsh WA sun.
Town Square view from Main Street.
The development outcome is undoubtedly more successful through the Client, Council and Designer interaction, and there is excitement around the focus on achieving a great community result. A high level of built form architecture will be achieved with designed landmark buildings acting as focal points and drawing people into the heart of the development.
Pedestrian flow and connections are improved; a covered feature Town Square integrates the public space in a comfortable environment; and unconventional activated back of house and loading areas are disguised through colour, planting, screening and vertical planting.
“The Brighton Marketplace is a project which presented many challenges from the outset. The requirement to work within a restrictive planning framework, yet still achieve a design which provides a successful retail, urban and commercial outcome has required a dynamic and innovative approach from the whole project team. Throughout the process i2C has always applied a customer centric approach and have driven a design which we can all be proud of. This development stands to be a leading development of its kind in Australia and i2C have played a major role in this”.
Regional Development Manager, Marketplaces & Big W
Corporate Property, Woolworths Ltd
Brighton Marketplace WA
Value: Stage 1 + Masterplan $100m
Discipline: Retail/Urban Planning/Planning/Design
Location: Brighton Butler WA
Status: Town Planning