The refurbishment of the Reg Bartley Oval Grandstand at Rushcutters Bay in Sydney required restoration of the existing grandstand and the construction of new public amenities and ground staff facilities. The brief included demolition of three buildings that surrounded and attached to the grandstand, cutting it off from the street and parkland behind.
The design strategy was to restore the existing structure’s prominence in the parkland and create better physical and visual connections around it. In order to minimize the impact of the new additions, they are placed directly behind the grandstand and divided into 3 smaller buildings instead of one building, reducing the overall bulk and scale. The new buildings are set off the grandstand with a passageway between them. Connection between the new and the old is on the first floor via a steel mesh walkway that lightly bridges the four buildings allowing light to filter below. The ancillary buildings are clad in the same weatherboard profile as the grandstand and with the heights of the new buildings aligning with the grandstand; they echo the scale and expression of the grandstand.
The ground floor of the three new buildings houses the male and female public toilets and a storage room. At high level, the timber façade into each of these rooms is perforated with a flower pattern allowing natural light and ventilation into these spaces, casting flower patterns around the rooms. The ground staff facilities on the top floor are also animated with perforations and views to the sky and trees through round skylights.