National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS) has engaged award-winning firm, Tanner Kibble Denton Architects, to design the replacement visitor centre in the Warrumbungle National Park after the original building was destroyed during the Wambelong bushfire almost three years ago.
Based in Sydney, Tanner Kibble Denton Architects was one of three firms from the NSW Government’s pre- qualified architects panel to submit tender bids for the project, addressing a comprehensive set of specifications outlined by NPWS.
On Monday, 2 November, NPWS staff, along with representatives from the NPWS Northern Plains Regional Advisory Committee and NSW Public Works, met with Alex Kibble, principal and managing director of Tanner Kibble Architects, on the proposed site of the visitor centre.
NPWS project manager, Warrumbungle National Park fire recovery, Craig Wall, said the project would be an exciting opportunity for the successful firm.
“They have been asked to deliver three design options in December for NPWS consideration,” Mr Wall explained.
“Comment and input on these options will be sought from the community representatives on the Regional Advisory Committee as well as relevant Local Governments.
“Once a final option is selected, comprehensive design and construction documents will be prepared.”
It is expected the final design will go to tender for construction in June 2016.
NPWS has set an ambitious task for the successful firm, seeking to retain many of the strengths of the previous visitor centre building, such as the large viewing window that framed the picturesque Grand High Tops and Breadknife.
Mr Wall said NPWS was also looking to provide an innovative nature play area for children as part of the landscaping around the visitor centre.
“NPWS hope to deliver a higher standard of service for visitors including providing Wi-Fi access to exciting new mobile apps for people to better enjoy the park’s magnificent natural and cultural values,” he said.
“The new visitor centre will provide a launching point from which to explore the park, providing an opportunity to gather information and replenish.”
Successful tenders for the Warrumbungle National Park Visitor Centre project toured the area recently. Pictured (l-r): Neil Webster, NSW Public Works; May Fleming, Visitor Centre manager; Alex Kibble, Tanner Kibble Denton Architects; Jane Judd, Northern Plains RAC; Peter Shinton, Northern Plains RAC; Mark Fosdick, NPWS area manager Coonabarabran; Maureen Sulter, Northern Plains RAC; and Rob Smith, NPWS regional manager northern plains.