Australia

A crying room, a toilet block and more green space: Sydney’s unbuilt projects


Every architect has an “unbuilt project” that they’ve cherished and misplaced, says distinguished Sydney architect Shaun Carter.

For Carter Williamson Architects, the one which “got away” was a bespoke and now controversial bathroom block – with somewhat plinth that might function a seat or a platform for musicians, stated Mr Carter. It was commissioned 4 years in the past by the Inner West Council for Camperdown Memorial Rest Park – a park with none public bogs – and nonetheless languishes on the drafting board.

Architect Shaun Carter designed a bathroom block for Camperdown Memorial Park for the Inner West Council nevertheless it was by no means constructed. Credit:Dominic Lorrimer

Other architects, like University of Newcastle professor of structure Michael Chapman, like to attract speculative concepts, similar to his proposal for a crying room that will be a spot to let all of it out after a gruelling lockdown.

Mr Carter’s bathroom block and Professor Chapman’s crying room have been amongst 20 unbuilt initiatives that have been recognised on the shortlist for the 2022 AA Prize for Unbuilt Work announced on Thursday.

A crying room, a place to chop onions and have a good cry, by the University of Newcastle’s professor of architecture Michael Chapman.

A crying room, a spot to cut onions and have a great cry, by the University of Newcastle’s professor of structure Michael Chapman. Credit:Michael Chapman

An annual award, it’s run by the Australian Institute of Architects’ official journal, Architecture Australia to encourage concepts, innovation and recognise what may have been.

Many entries responded to the pandemic by proposing a kinder gentler metropolis with extra inexperienced areas. Architect Layla Stanley gained a shortlist spot for her imaginative and prescient, Native Networks, a passage for flora, fauna and pedestrians that will begin at Sydney Royal Botanic Garden and snake via town and alongside the railway line from Central Station to Newtown. Another entry melded a cabin with a tent for a pop-up getaway.

Professor Chapman’s shortlisted entry for a “crying room” quoted Victor Hugo’s Les Misérables, “Those who do not weep, do not see.” He drew a cylindrical restaurant (the phrase comes from the French to revive) with guillotine blades able to fall. “You pull the levers, it chops the onions, the vapour induces the tears, and creates warmth,” he stated. And the chopped onions create restorative soup,” he stated.

Emotion was not one thing folks related to structure, stated Professor Chapman. If the onions don’t unleash feelings, a bottle of whisky was solely an arm away within the picture.



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