Payinthi is a new community and civic facility at 128 Prospect Road, Prospect that brings all Council’s services under the one roof, and carefully incorporates a refurbished heritage-listed Town Hall. Payinthi is the culmination of five years’ work by Council and the community, who worked together to imagine, design and create a landmark building for the benefit of the whole community, and that also connects with and enhances the Prospect Road Village Heart precinct.
The facility features a modern, artistic and sustainable design, inspired by and responding to its setting and its role as a centre of community activity. The design includes:
- Lots of large windows allowing natural light, transparency and openness, with a louvered façade screen used to minimise heat loading and direct views
- Indoor and outdoor spaces suitable for a range of community activities
- Areas that can be booked by local community members and businesses via a new online system (Space2Co) with after-hours code access
- New technologies embedded throughout, including IT to support wireless high speed internet and multimedia capabilities complementing the Village Heart meshed public Wi-Fi network
- Increased car parking availability, complemented by bike parking and end-of-trip facilities
- A ground floor café and a commercial office tenancy on the upper level of the new building, with an additional food and beverage tenancy in the Town Hall basement
The roof of the facility has been covered with 100 solar panels providing for a total of 38kW in power generation, with the total real-time generation and consumption displayed within the main foyer of the building, alongside water consumption. Monthly reporting shows that an average of 5MWh is being produced and fed back into the grid each month, representing approximately 2.5 tonnes of carbon offset per month.
The open-plan layout of the facility allows the organisation to change and adapt to circumstances, from the customer reception area that doubles as a function space, through to the open-plan office areas and breakout spaces that foster collaboration.
The design has created a series of beautiful spaces, which together create a wonderful sense of place for staff and community members alike. This has had clear benefits in bringing the community together to experience the various arts, events and functions, as well as access the services provided by Council. Since opening in mid-October 2019, the building was attracting double the monthly patronage of our old facility, and numbers were continuing to increase before COVID-19 restrictions were implemented, although patronage remains strong.
Project success was achieved by:
- Engaging early with key groups and keeping them involved for the whole project
- Seeking independent expert advice to inform key Council decisions
- Making bold decisions to create a facility that caters for future community needs
- Integrating heritage and art with contemporary building design
- Focusing on creating a truly ‘Prospect’ feel
Critically, Council used a private-public partnership model for additional investment in the facility and area, choosing to subdivide and sell a portion of the site for private sector development, as well as creating two spaces within the facility for leasing (commercial offices on the top floor, and a retail / food & beverage tenancy on the ground floor.
The design has created a series of beautiful spaces, which together create a wonderful sense of place for community members, visitors and staff alike. This has had clear benefits in bringing the community together to experience the various arts, events and functions, as well as access the services provided by Council.
Payinthi is a great place to work, to visit and to stay, and makes an amazing contribution to the community through a bold yet sensitive approach to planning and design.
This information was provided by Chris Newby, Manager Special Projects, City of Prospect