Kenilworth Designer Dunny
In late 2015 Sunshine Coast Council announced a design competition seeking ideas for its planned new public toilets in Isaac Moore Park, just outside Kenilworth.
The competition was intended to flush out an 'iconic facility' that would become a landmark and bring visitors to Kenilworth.
The proposed site is a beautiful stretch of north-facing land beside the Mary River, with large open lawns bordered by mixed tree species.
The site experiences flooding, and one of Council's functional requirements is that the dunny building remain safe and protected during floods.
The competition brief suggested the dunny building would have to be raised some 4 metres above ground to meet this requirement.
This would require a very long ramp to provide access for all, and initially we liked the idea of exploring this long gentle journey up to the dunny.
Eventually we decided that there had to be another way to keep the building safe in a flood, without having to create a long, uphill journey.
The answer: make the building float.
Our scheme, The Lost Boat, is a facility that can be easily accessed, at-grade, for the majority of its operational life.
Designed on houseboat principles, it is intended to rise in conjunction with flood inundation, ensuring the building and septic tank remain flood immune.
The access ramp reaches a predetermined maximum extension and slope before automatically disconnecting from the structure. A flexible pipe connecting to the septic treatment system is intended to uncoil to a predetermined length during minor flooding, with a shut-off valve closing after a set limit before the pipe disconnects.
Whilst our scheme was not one of the 12 shortlisted finalists, we really enjoyed the process of interrogating the design brief and proposing a solution we felt would work well for people using the park facilities, whilst also protecting the council's assets.