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  • Andrew Gall

Argall at the Melbourne Arts Centre

Argall is proud to be part of Cumulus Studio's winning entry in the design competition of a new cafe in the forecourt of the Roy Grounds designed Melbourne Arts Centre.

The design incorporates an organic steel structure covered by a single curtain facade made from Kaynemaile, a fire and UV resistant polycarbonate mesh, originally used as chainmail costumes in the Lord of the Rings movies. The facade also doubles as a surface suitable for projecting images and creating new way of the Melbourne Arts Centre connecting with the wider public (refer to image below).

The steel structure is comprised of circular hollow section columns, supporting a timber and steel hybrid roof structure. The location and angle of columns are asymmetrical and positioned to both represent a more organic structure, as well as work within the open and contemporary set out of joinery and seating as part of the cafe below.

The structure was modeled parametrically using Rhino & Grasshopper to enable the eccentric form to be optimised so the structure is self balanced under gravity loads. The optimisation was carried out using evolutionary based algorithms which considered over 20,000 iterations of the form to minimise the induced lateral sway under self weight.

Argall are excited in continuing our working relationship with Cumulus, as well as contributing to the footprint of public space in Melbourne. Keep an eye out for the new cafe in 2019.

For more information about the cafe and Cumulus' winning entry, please refer to the link below:

Argall would also like to personally thank our external advisers for their assistance as part of this project.

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