Buddhist Teachings Inherent in Design of Bridge and Plaza

Linking the temple and learning institute, the Nan Tien Bridge and Plaza will provide community space for the expanding Buddhist precinct in Wollongong, NSW.

The Nan Tien Bridge and Plaza, with design by global architecture firm Woods Bagot, will link the Nan Tien Institute and Cultural Centre to the iconic Nan Tien Temple, the largest Buddhist temple in the southern hemisphere.

Located in Berkeley on the southern outskirts of Wollongong, the Nan Tien Bridge is the final piece in the Buddhist community precinct.

The development has the potential to be the catalyst for rejuvenation of the community with a rich variety of mixed uses. This new link will facilitate a seamless learning opportunity for students whilst becoming a tourist attraction itself.

“The precinct will be alive with students, teachers, visitors and tourists alike. This bridge and plaza links the temple, institute and pagoda in a scheme designed to create a human-scale fabric for community gathering,” says Georgia Singleton, Director and Global Sector Leader in Education, Science and Health at Woods Bagot.

The Nan Tien Institute, also with architecture by Woods Bagot, is complemented by the connection, integrating the new development to the historic Nan Tien temple.

Inspired by Buddhist philosophy, the design features extensive landscaping representative of the strong Buddhist connection to the environment and at the same time offering a space conducive to reflection and collaborative learning.

The bridge itself features green space along its length, bringing life and energy to this link over the highway.

“The architecture is influenced by the principles of Buddhist teachings, made manifest in a living green, land bridge design,” says Woods Bagot Design Leader Alan J Duffy.

Embedded within the design, the Nan Tien Bridge and Plaza will house a kiosk and shops, providing an accessible and user-friendly passage between the temple and the institute.

The design is a cultivation of Humanistic Buddhism which welcomes visitors to be immersed in its environment and culture.

Project summary
Location: Berkeley, New South Wales
Gross Area: 4,600 m2
Budget: AUD 18m
Project Team: Georgia Singleton, Alan J Duffy, Chang Liu, Danny Chan, Luca Biselli


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