The CSIRO National Bushfire Behaviour Research Laboratory is a new home for two unique and internationally significant scientific apparatus that measure the effects of bushfires in controlled and repeatable experiments.
The new building is bold and monumental but comfortably embeds itself in the landscape by being clad in recessive tones, inspired by the colours of the freshly fire-scarred bush.
The brief and budget sharpened decisions on constructability and sustainability. Shed-like construction methodologies were pursued to maximise value for the client and the building is framed and clad in steel as its site is, ironically, bushfire prone.
Careful choices were made regarding light, natural ventilation and air-conditioning to suit sustainability objectives and the unique and specific requirements of the experiments. However, the real hero of the project is the research that is undertaken within, which greatly informs efforts to protect the millions of hectares of forests threatened by bushfires every year.