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Calder Woodburn Rest Area / BKK Architects

  • 00:00 - 21 January, 2011
Calder Woodburn Rest Area / BKK Architects
Calder Woodburn Rest Area / BKK Architects, © John Gollings
© John Gollings

© John Gollings © John Gollings © John Gollings © John Gollings + 23

  • Architects

  • Location

    Goulburn Valley Hwy, Shepparton VIC, Australia
  • Category

  • Project Team

    Julian Kosloff, Simon Knott, Tim Black, Stephanie Bullock, Rory Hyde
  • Structural Engineer

  • Landscape Architect

    VicRoads Landscape and Urban Design
  • Area

    549.0 m2
  • Project Year

  • Photographs

Text description provided by the architects. The Roadside Service Station

There is a long and rich history of the service station within Australia. The familiar image of the large floating roof providing shelter to the amenities of the service provider is a strong memory for all who have undertaken a road trip. It performs a vital role in the rest and re-supply needs of the traveler. These places mark a point in a journey, a place for pausing, a place for reflection. The roof serves as both shelter and icon, signaling to the passerby while serving the practical function of sheltering the amenities below. Our project celebrates this imagery.

© John Gollings
© John Gollings

The Civic Monument

Monuments are an integral and familiar part of cities and towns. They provide a valuable insight into the culture of a place and locate it within a broader history. Our building is placed on a plinth that raises it out of the flood plain and gives the structure a civic monumentality that encourages readings and understandings beyond the notion of the ‘toilet block’. This building is to be read as a gateway to the Calder Woodburn Memorial Avenue (CWMA) and also to the larger Shepparton Area.


The CWMA naming plaque has been relocated amongst a landscaped system of paths and planting adjacent to the rest station. Visitors will pause to read the plaque against the backdrop of planting that repeats the Avenue of Honour as they make their way to the picnic tables.

© John Gollings
© John Gollings

The Diagram

The diagrams represent the nucleus of an idea. The diagrams describe the disbursed nature of planting within the landscape, in particular the prominent trees such as the CWMA, and suggest a way in which this might be focussed around a single civic structure.The diagrams also suggest a different reading of this landscape by directing the views through a series of elements, in much the same way as the trees within the Avenue provide fleeting glimpses and frame the expansive views of the flood plains beyond.

rest station plan
rest station plan

Materiality and Construction

The construction of the toilet blocks themselves utilises standard road building techniques of pre-cast concrete units located on a reinforced concrete slab. This process minimises on-site time, labor and construction costs. The steel-framed roof is then built over these units to provide shelter.

© John Gollings
© John Gollings

The cylindrical units are reminiscent of pre-cast elements used in road and bridge building that one encounters by the side of the road. The interior partitions are constructed from brightly coloured glazed bricks providing a ‘jewel-like’ visual contrast to the internal concrete shell. Materials have been chosen for their robustness and low maintenance.

© John Gollings
© John Gollings


The siting of the structures is designed to emphasise the linearity and contained views of the CWMA. The main iconic toilet block acts as a signpost to the rest station with uninterrupted views to and from the Highway. The arrangement of the remainder of the facility is in a series of bands that screen different areas such as the carpark from the picnic areas. Expansive views of the floodplains to the north open up as one moves through these layers.

rest station detailed plan
rest station detailed plan

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Project location

Location to be used only as a reference. It could indicate city/country but not exact address.
About this office
Cite: "Calder Woodburn Rest Area / BKK Architects" 21 Jan 2011. ArchDaily. Accessed . <> ISSN 0719-8884
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