Puffing Billy Lakeside Discovery Centre

BKK - Black Kosloff Knott Architects / Emerald, Australia

The Lakeside Discovery Centre will be a new type of visitor experience where the Journey on the train continues through the building and celebrates an enriched history of community, endeavor and relationship to country. The place for Gathering and Exchange, the new centre is a space where people come together to celebrate the railway, the local landscape and the cultures, both old and new that exist there.

The introduction of the railway in the early 1900s was a radical deployment of new technology, one which had a dramatic impact on the existing landscape and culture, opening new food production, tourism and industry through the Dandenong Ranges. The landscape of the site can be seen as a reflection of the juxtaposition of the manicured European gardens of the lake with the pristine beauty of indigenous country. The railway bisects these two conditions and provides, though the Discovery Centre, a point of reconciliation. The main structure grows out of the land, designed to be subservient to the landscape and embedded within it. The heritage components are then reinterpreted, creating a tangible sensory experience.

Site Area

1 ha


  • Competition
  • Ecology
  • Furniture and Signage
  • Green Roof
  • Heritage
  • Industrial
  • Land Use and Spatial Studies
  • Landscape Master Plan
  • Open Space
  • Public Art
  • Public Domain Strategy
  • Public Realm Planning and Design
  • Recreation