Architecture & Urban Conditions
One of the greatest challenges facing the sustainability and growth of the city is the capacity to feed its ever-increasing population. The current model of providing food is dependent on the importation of goods from agricultural hinterland by a corporate duopoly, severing the connection urban dwellers have with systems of food production. This physical and ideological divide continues to widen as the remaining peri-agricultural fringe to the city is consumed by urban sprawl and the capacity to grow local produce is diminished.
The proposal for the revived bays market seeks to demonstrate the potential of urban agriculture as a basis for a sustainable local food system, while enhancing a sense of place and community for the local population. The masterplan seeks to improve the connectivity of the public realm between Wentworth Park and the eastern foreshore of Blackwattle Bay through a spine of communal and market buildings. Aligned to Wattle St, this intervention possesses a distinct urban character allowing the new activity to be framed in the landscape. This intention gives form to the building proposal, defining its permeability and treatment of volumes, and the programme of a new community centred market place.
The food market proposes a new model whereby the stalls have the capacity to harvest their own crop on site to eliminate the consumption of resources in transporting goods. This publicly reintroduces and demonstrates the ability for urban agriculture to function within a distinctly urban setting. In addition to the garden marketplace, the proposal suggests a kindergarten, demonstrative urban farm, public exhibition spaces, slow food dining and communal food exchange framed around the activity of local food production. A new model of communal building is intended, creating interactive urban spaces that serve to promote knowledge and practices of urban agriculture while transforming the functionality of the conventional market to serve the city.