Penguin Parade visitor centre

The Penguin Parade Visitor Centre on Phillip Island, Australia, is a $58 million demolition and redevelopment of the existing visitors’ centre – one of the state of Victoria’s most popular tourism destinations. Every evening visitors gather to watch the little penguins come ashore and make their way to their burrows along the coastline. Philip Island Nature Parks, the conservation organisation that operates complementary ecotourism experiences through the centre, has become a pre-eminent authority on care for penguins and development and conservation of penguin habitat.

The uniquely shaped building nestled between the wetland and coastal landscapes has been designed by Terroir Architects and built by Kane Constructions. Its architectural inspiration and form combine elements of the Sommerland Peninsula’s basalt bluff, coastal dunes, and wetlands.

The façade features zinc shingle cladding and thermally broken aluminium framed windows arranged over a complex geometry skin in response to the tough exterior environment.

Michael Crowley“The building, which can house up to 3,800 people in a single evening, has a skin which has been designed with occupant comfort and safety in mind being located in an area often subject to fluctuating temperatures and occasional extreme conditions such as bushfires.”
Michael Crowley, Associate, Melbourne

The Bunurong / Boonwurrung people are the traditional custodians of the country where this project stands. The centre has taken out a 2019 International Architecture Award, out of a field of over 380 submissions from 41 countries. It has also received two prestigious awards at the 2020 Victorian Architecture Awards.

. 2021 World Architecture Festival Awards – Highly Commended, Display Category
. 2020 Australian Institute of Architecture Victorian Awards – The William Wardell Award for Public Architecture
. 2020 Australian Institute of Architecture Victorian Awards – Regional Award
. 2019 International Architecture Awards – Parks and Gardens

  • Scope
  • Location
  • Client
  • Architect
  • Photos