Yea is a regional Victorian town on the edge of magnificent wetlands. The Yea Wetlands Visitor Information Centre is a new cultural centre that encourages visitors to immerse themselves in the natural beauty of the wetlands and provides a community meeting place for the town.

The new centre draws attention to the relationship between the town and the wetlands, highlighting the importance of water and the ongoing reliance the town has on the wetlands for its livelihood, heritage and cultural development.

It is a practical, rural building that reflects community values, and makes use of local materials and construction techniques. It is designed to be a good fit for the community; straight forward, honest and welcoming.

The new centre unites the community via a facility that enables promotion, research, and preservation of the wetlands while drawing attention to surrounding attractions and businesses.


Environmental Benefits

  • Built on a previous tip site, the building doesn't take up valuable land, rather it's built on what was underutilised land
  • Research facility linked to Melbourne University to further understand how to preserve the wetlands
  • North orientation for passive solar design
  • Double glazing
  • Openable windows for natural ventilation
  • Windows and dispersing surfaces to spread natural light
  • Low VOC materials for clean indoor air
  • Energy efficient HVAC system zoned for maximum efficiency
  • Rainwater harvesting for use in toilets and gardens plus low water use fittings
  • Wire pergola for seasonal shading
  • Local materials and construction techniques
  • Robust flexible spaces
  • Renewable energy 4.5 Kw PV array, back to grid

Social Benefits

  • Provides the Yea community with a central community meeting place and a landmark
  • Community friendly building with user friendly systems
  • Provides local employment via staff for the centre
  • Local expert volunteers are also involved in taking wetland tours
  • Brings two disparate groups together, the environmental group and the business group
  • The interpretive centre attracts schoolchildren from all over Victoria to study the importance of water and to discover and explore the wetlands
  • The children are also part of the ongoing research of the wetlands via smartphone apps which allow them to collect data for scientists to interpret

Economic Benefits

  • The building promotes tourism in the Yea area and tourism is a growth sector
  • Local Employment
  • Increased science research