Architecture and design practice Terroir has unveiled a new proposal for the North West Museum and Art Gallery in Burnie, Tasmania. 

Designed to house both the city's Regional Art Gallery and Museum, the project will be sited along the Bass Highway.As Burnie City Council states, the NWMAG will showcase the region’s natural environment, its history and heritage, as well as the communities shaping the city's future.

In the last quarter of 2018, the City Council invited tender submissions from architects for the design of the new cultural facility. 

The council’s brief looked for a facility that would be “iconic, a building of style and stature, which would attract visitors to itself, as much as to its exhibits. 

It would also reflect the natural environment of the north-west region and embrace contemporary biophilic design principles." 

As a result, Terroir’s design is inspired by the rugged, sculpted coastline of Tasmania’s North West region, a four-story volume with gallery space, back of house and storage. 

On the ground floor, an "urban room" is made to draw in visitors and encourage them to discover the building's spaces.

Along the building facade, the design team created a series of expansive "keyhole spaces" where visitors can look out from within the gallery. 

These keyholes are informed by the North West region’s rainforests and its coastal landscapes. 

On its upper level, this distinct form will be used to open up views to the Bass Strait. 

The $18 million project received $5 million in funding from the federal government in April 2019. Now, due to the outbreak of COVID-19, the NWMAG project has been temporarily put on hold.