Top honours for Bowen Place Crossing

Fireworks over Lake Burley Griffin with the National Library and Commonwealth Bridge in the background.
Fireworks over Lake Burley Griffin with the National Library and Commonwealth Bridge in the background.
Media type
Date of Publication
1 July 2016

The National Capital Authority’s (NCA) Bowen Place Crossing (the Crossing) was announced the winner of the coveted Canberra Medallion at the 2016 Australian Institute of Architects’ ACT Architecture Awards on Saturday 25 June 2016.

The prestigious award was presented to Lahznimmo Architects for their elegant yet functional design which also won the Sir John Overall Award for Urban Design.

NCA Chief Executive, Malcolm Snow, welcomed the award which acknowledged the delivery of an intelligent urban design solution for the Crossing.

“Since opening in September last year, it’s evident the community appreciates the level of care and attention to detail that has gone into the design and development of the Crossing. Being awarded the ACT Institute of Architects’ highest honour acknowledges these accomplishments and the priority we place on high quality, design-led outcomes,” said Mr Snow.

“Whilst the $10 million project was initiated as a public safety enhancement, the Crossing was also an exercise in place making. The design took advantage of key view corridors to and from the lakeside site including the National Carillon, while ensuring an integrated design incorporating shared use of the space to greatly improve safety and connectivity for motorists, pedestrians and cyclists,” said Mr Snow.

Lahznimmo Architects were one of four firms invited to participate in a select design competition conducted by the NCA to design the new crossing. Lahznimmo Architects’ Director, Andrew Nimmo, said their scheme for Bowen Place Crossing sought to enhance existing geometries and forms in the landscape to create an architectural insertion that was minimal, sculptural, refined and elegant.

“This is the role of design in infrastructure – to create a beautiful space that contributes to place making and is also highly functional,” said Mr Nimmo.

In awarding the project, the jury noted ‘the project is an exemplar of a thoughtfully instigated competition procurement process. Led by the NCA it sought a design led outcome befitting the contextual significance of the siting. The foresight to imagine the scope and possibility for an urban landscape element of poetic scale and enduring contribution, adjoining Lake Burley Griffin in the Central National Area, is the key to the success of the intervention.’

The Bowen Place Crossing project has attracted other industry awards including the Master Builders Association’s (MBA) Civil Works Award presented to the Building Contractor, Woden Contractors, on 24 June 2016. Woden Contractors also won the Civil Contractors Federation’s (CCF) Category 3 Award for projects between $5m – $10m for the Crossing in May 2016.

The project will now go on to the Australian Institute of Architects’ National Awards in November as well as be considered for the CCF and MBA National Awards later in the year.