The brief called for the transformation of a disused train line, at the southern extent of Flinders Street Station, into a contemporary restaurant and bar. The venue was to contribute positively to the city’s hospitality offering, while sitting comfortably within the surrounding heritage context. The site was significantly constrained, by existing railway infrastructure, a series of mature trees, site accessibility and a footprint that was little more than a wide footpath.

The design response was to contain kitchens, bars and back of house all within a sequence of minimalist white polycarbonate boxes, located in line immediately adjacent to the station platform. This left a thin ribbon of circulation running east to west, punctuated by seating areas, where trees and the landscape allow. Construction challenges were mitigated by the extensive use of pre-fabrication, which maximized cost and onsite construction efficiencies. 

The elongated single level white form is bookended at either end with bars that are internally lined in timber, creating a welcoming, warm glow on entry. In the evening the polycarbonate skin is back-lit, transforming the entire structure into a lantern by the river edge.

Date:

2015

Gross Floor Area:

1,000 sqm

Client:

HQ Group

Consultant:

BDD Engineering / Cortese Consultants

General Contractor:

Rattray Group

Photography:

John Gollings