The large quantities of concrete used in the construction of the new performance space may seem to run contrary to the school’s commitment to use materials with a low embodied energy. Unlike cob, which is mixed from material mostly found on site, a great deal of energy goes into the production of cement. But fear not, dear reader. The cement used in the spiral shell was once waste. After striking a deal with the suppliers who provide concrete for the roadworks on the Great Western Highway, Jason was given the leftovers. What would have been waste, earmarked for landfill, is now the footing of the new building.
A performance space and kindy is emerging from the ground. The concrete footing is laid, the steel beams are up and the purlins are set. The Spiral Shell is taking form.
Designed by Sunlab’s Simon Hearn, the small circular room at the top end is more that an eccentric technical room but the building’s structural core. From here, the beams radiate out, forming the frame of a performance space that will seat about 140.
Jason needed a “hands on” crew!
A crew cheerful and hardworking.
A crew that could sing as it worked.
A crew that would work for the satisfaction of getting their hands dirty…..
The kindy children arrived to the new year to find their newly renovated kindy room was very different. For a start it was bigger but it was also a kindy with no doors and no windowpanes.
It was like camping; the cool breezes on a hot summer day most welcome
but when the hail and thunderous rain came,
Often at the Kindlehill building site, heavy objects need to be moved. In keeping with an effort to keep carbon dioxide emissions low, and empower the humans working on-site rather than employing excess machinery, several large steel beams have been moved by many able bodies over the last week or so. This video captures one such moment, where workers formed the “legs” of what became known as a “steel caterpillar”, as it inched its way to a new resting place.
See more photos in the Chook House gallery.
Pundits call it the “Guggenheim of Chook Houses”, breathlessly comparing the iconic art gallery’s spiral design to Kindlehill’s chicken house (well at least Dave and myself did over a glass of wine).
Although there is one noticeable difference. Whereas Frank Lloyd Wright’s utilized a gentle helical spiral for the gallery’s interior, architect Jamie Brennan and the Landscaping Group applied the Golden Mean – a geometric ratio based on the proportions of nature – to the school’s chook palace.