This project, instigated as part of a Strategic Plan by Resource NSW (now part of the NSW Environmental Protection Agency) was designed to deliver an ecologically sustainable platform for new waste resource management infrastructure. The facility was designed for discarding and receiving of all types of material and would provide convenient and readily available discard options for all members of the community so as to deliver clearly source separated resource streams for subsequent re-use. The brief was to develop a prototype centre on Great Western Highway near Penrith with a clear identity and profile. The centre had to be easy to use, simple to understand and be capable of educating and demonstrating to the public the environmental reasons and concepts behind the facility.
An existing heritage-listed bungalow was to be integrated into the overall site planning. Accommodation was to include heavy dinosaur bins, lighter bottle bins, a salvage facility, administration offices and education/seminar facilities as well as a shop selling recycled goods. The sequence of vehicular approach combined with judicious signage markers and simple circulation was a critical determinant of the design. In addition, the placement of the shop and operations room provides maximum exposure to arriving traffic. The plan form principle of a ‘Diamond’ shape with heavy bins on one side with lighter bins inside the internal ‘diamond’, facilitates a clear arrangement for management of deposited items by the operator as well as providing a ‘mental map’ for the public. Careful consideration was given to stormwater management, landscape design, water usage, noise and a myriad of operational issues to ensure an environmentally integrated proposal was inherent in the design.
The building developed as a semi-industrial rural ‘shed’ in terms of scale & massing albeit with a non-traditional planning logic. The bungalow and its garden were masterplanned with a view to operation as an Environmental Education Centre as a compliment to the recycling component.
DTRC (Drive Thru Recycling Centre) Penrith
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