The desire for cultural literacy, competency and inclusivity are the expressed needs for developing community of the Elements Estate in Truganina, situated in Melbourne’s western growth front.The aspirations of this community have been shared with Wyndham City Council and Canvas projects in a series of co-design workshops, facilitated by theMurdoch Children’s Research Institute, for the 8 months spanning the pre-design and concept design of this project. In the process of this community co-design, the idea of community identity and values have been formed in plain sight and have manifest in the development of a brief, a plan, a building form and a vision co-authored by the people who will use this centre and those who will provide the services there.
The new centre will be the first of its kind for this municipality and the state of Victoria, a community centre with an integrated library lounge providing the community with informal access to books and programs promoting cultural literacy. Access to programs and a focused library collection is available through a sequence of open library lounge areas tailored for diverse building users. An Early Years Library Lounge for young families and new parents, an informal games lounge for youth and young adults, a north facing library lounge overlooking a community garden for seniors and a silent study lounge for students and adult learners seeking a place to study away from their homes.
Library lounges annex the central spine of the building connecting the three community rooms, three kindergarten rooms and MCH consulting spaces. The central building spine also provides direct access to a large town square, community verandas, a junior garden, a courtyard garden and a community produce garden. These external and internal non-programmed spaces providing this community with an array of different types of spaces to occupy responding to the diversity of their individual needs but also connected to encourage their shared use.