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Perth Airport’s new business park is off to a flying start with a DIA Award

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October 21st, 2008

Architect firm Woodhead have won a Design Institute of Australia WA Commendation award for their fit-out of the Westralia Airports Corporation headquarters at Perth Airport.

The $1.1 million fit-out, named ‘hkew’, takes inspiration from the blue sky, sun and grey tarmac and carries the ‘airport theme’ throughout the entire design scheme – the judges noting that a “quirky use of graphics and aircraft palette have created a bright clean environment that visually engages visitors and staff alike.”

The office mimics the cross section of an airplane and the interior design uses motifs more akin to a departure lounge than an office block. Key areas in the building are denoted by symbols rather than written signs – kitchens with coffee cups and soup bowls and stationery stores with scissors.

“Airports are designed to accommodate large numbers of people passing through,” says Woodhead Perth Principal, Jacqui Preshaw, “so the signage has to facilitate mass navigation and bridge different languages and cultures.”

Overall the architecture of the building – in the form of an ‘H’ for ‘hkew’ – encourages energy-efficient use of the interiors. Large, flexible floorplates do not exceed more than 22 metres in width to allow natural light to reach throughout the office, and the central stairs persuade people away from the lift.

“There has been an overwhelmingly positive reception of the project by our client, their customers and now with this further recognition by the DIA through the Commendation, our peers,” Preshaw says.


Woodhead also won a commendation for their design of the Edith Cowan University Lecture Theatre.








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