Western Australian Maritime Museum

Fremantle, Western Australia

The Western Australian Maritime Museum was the first stage of an urban renewal program for the Fremantle Waterfront, and an opportunity to create an international standard and a vibrant destination for people of all ages.

The museum houses Australia II, the America’s Cup winning yacht, and other significant water-craft. Positioned at the end of the Swan River promontory, the building is conceived as both an extension of the promontory and as a series of metaphors that provide clues to its role and function. It employs a language created from industrial components and materials that reflect boat building methods, such as sheet metalling of submarines and ship hulls.

The roof forms directly correlate with a complex arrangement of exhibition spaces, providing intrigue to the static display spaces. These extend into a simple more orderly arrangement of flexible “black box”, interactive spaces, and auditorium, sales and information areas. A later addition is a series of sculptural elements called Welcome Walls, which commemorates migrants who arrived at port by sea.

  • Awards
  • Technical Information
  • Cox Team

George Temple Poole Award, RAIA WA 2003

Public Institutional Award, RAIA WA 2003

Excellence in Construction Award, Masters Builders Association 2003

Fremantle Heritage Award, 2003

Australian Construction Achievement Award, 2003

High Commendation, Public and Commercial Buildings, Australian Timber Design Awards 2002

High Commendation, Best Use of Timber Engineering, Australian Timber Design Awards 2002

Project Status
Completed, 1998-2002
Key Consultants
Arup, Aurecon (Connell Wagner), Norman Disney & Young, Bassett Consulting, GHD, Currie and Brown Hollis & Walker, Stephen Grubits & Associates, Webb Australia, RobertsDay, Cunningham Martyn Design, Gabriels Environmental Design, Dr Barrie Machin (Tamora), Western Red
Contractor / Builder
Brookfield Multiplex
Gross Floor Area
Ba Tuoc Vo
Rob Schmidt
Simon Bodycoat