National Arboretum, Canberra, Freefall Experience Design Ideas Competition entry, July 2014.
Hiromi: “The intent of our entry’s design was to create a striking structure, an egg-shaped pod with a compelling story, in line with the competition’s aim of increasing the number of people visiting the National Arboretum Canberra.
“We aimed to achieve this by creating an engineering and architectural statement linking the contemporary use of timber, as a traditional building material, with the structure’s surrounding environment and the existing long-span structures of the National Arboretum Visitor Centre’s structure.
“The main structural element forming the egg-pod’s shape is a curved, cantilevering rib comprising glued, laminated timber fabricated from numerous pieces. The section is thicker at the bottom and thinner at the top, following the intensity of structural forces in the cantilevering structural element to achieve a simple but economical section.
“A pod itself is a non-prescriptive space, one for yoga, for reading, just a place in which people can do whatever they wish to relax. We were fascinated by creating a space for people to do nothing in particular, where they could just stay and listen to the wind and the movements of the leaves.”