Aspire & Bendigo Cathedral Precinct Redevelopment comprises of a multi-faith interpretive centre, refurbishment of an existing parish hall as a multi-purpose function centre, a new forecourt facing High Street and a main stair connection up to Sacred Heart Cathedral’s level.
The Aspire Foundation Redevelopment project aims to respond to regional challenges and opportunities and to meet the needs of its community and Bendigo city’s tourism audience.
Situated on the corner of High Street and Short Street, at the foot of the Bendigo Cathedral Precinct, is a single story industrial brick building (a former Haymes Paint shop) and a small brick parish hall building with a feature slate roof.
Following the project objectives, the former Haymes Paint shop will be refurbished as an interpretive centre to accommodate multiple programmes including; an immersive theatre, a multi-faith and Bendigo History exhibition space and a library and learning centre. The existing parish hall will be refurbished as a multi-purpose function centre.
Due to the challenge of existing topography, and the difference in level (approx. 5.5m) between the two existing buildings, a contemporary style extension is proposed to facilitate their connectivity. The extension comprises of a lift, common lobbies, stair access, toilet amenities and a café, which will serve and link the inter-connecting functions within the two buildings.
Externally, a forecourt is proposed facing High Street, to activate the public realm on an otherwise under utilised area of the precinct. A main staircase, which aligns with the cathedral secondary axis, is proposed as a physical connection and pedestrian access up to the cathedral’s level.