i2C’s Interiors Studio was engaged by QIC to revitalise the design of the Fresh Food Precinct at Westpoint Shopping Centre in Blacktown.
The brief was to create a place that people could meander through, slowing down the pace and encouraging them to stay for a while. The space was not a conventional food court as it only had a few dedicated food kiosks. The experience was more about refuge and interaction between people.
The existing space had a lot of design potential as it was situated within a four-storey atrium filled with natural light. The vision for the precinct was to create a Mediterranean inspired piazza with white brick architecture, timber accents and silvery green foliage throughout. The design was intended to be versatile for all users incorporating communal tables for larger groups, individual seating with USB access for people wanting to relax and recharge on their own, comfort for older patrons and a kid’s play area with lounge seating for parents.
Curved forms including the brickwork and tiled seating elements were a fundamental feature throughout the design. Collaboration with the client, builder, furniture maker, bricklayer and structural engineer was critical to detail exactly how these elements would be constructed to create smooth contours with materials not conventionally designed to be curved.
The concept was greatly informed by the diverse demography of the suburb, with subtle references to various cultural communities like the crafted woven furniture iconic of the Philippines, the harmonious circular forms symbolic to China, the rich textural tapestries of India and the overall classic arched forms reminiscent of historical architecture present in many of these cultures. This connection to People and Place was fundamental to the design.
Day one of the precinct opening was visibly reinvigorated and alive with activity. You could see people were genuinely excited to be in the space which was a sign of the success of its design. People had laptops out having informal meetings, parents were sitting around the play area with their children, older groups of people were sitting around the communal table having a chat – the space truly became a hub of interaction for the centre.
Builder: Construction Control
Location: Blacktown, NSW
Associate | National Interior Design Manager