A $58 million proposal to restore the near-century old Bondi Pavilion has been lodged with Waverly Council and promises to reinvigorate the cultural and community hub.

Tonkin Zulaikha Greer (TZG) conceived the concept design and will deliver the project after winning the tender as part of a design excellence competition announced back in June. The architect’s proposal has a strong theme of historic preservation and will see non-heritage building elements pared back to make way for the reinstatement of some of the building’s original features as well as new historically-sympathetic additions.

“This building is a precious heritage landmark, and the project will conserve and reinstate so much of its heritage character – and remove intrusive modern additions,” says TZG Director Peter Tonkin.

“At the same time, we want this building to be a vibrant hub for the community, whether that’s visiting art exhibition spaces, relaxing in the beautiful courtyard gardens, dining at a restaurant or enjoying a theatre performance.”

TZG will reinstate pedestrian activation through the building by reopening the east-west corridor and the entrance to the former proscenium to the north western façade to encourage the community to access the Pavilion along the original and intended pathways through the park.


Furthering the building’s practicality, the architects will also replace the current concrete roof tiles with terracotta tiles and reconfigure floorplans to make better use of space on the building’s second floor. Renders of the new Pavilion also show large array of photovoltaic and a new louvre element over the main building’s atrium space.


Aesthetically the building will be returned to its mixture of Georgian revival and Mediterranean styles, TZG will insert reinterpretations of the original colonnades into the inside parameters and will reinstate the original arched windows on the building’s second floor.

The most notable addition however looks to be a new state of the art, multipurpose theatre in the courtyard, where the music studios are currently located. The theatre will be constructed with reflective material and built in a way to appear curved to evoke the colour and feel of the water. The material used is apparently ideal for the sandy and windy conditions, able to mask any dirt or marks. This performance space will be used for music performances and rehearsals, as well as other presentations and community use.


Additional commercial offerings are also part of the first floor design, and there are at least three spaces on the building’s reconfigured second floor not yet allocated for specific purpose.

Community consultation on the concept will commence on Friday 18 December 2015 and run until Sunday 14 February 2016.

Images: Tonkin Zulaikha Greer