City of Kingston


Edithvale Life Saving Club.
Esplanade Lane, Edithvale VIC.


A new double storey building to replace an existing 100-year-old weatherboard structure, providing lifesaving facilities, an observation room, a new community space and kiosk, and necessary public facilities.

Construction Cost

Project Completion


November 2019.

Design Statement

The design of the building is founded in the contrast between the built form and its materiality. Nautical themes drive the form of the building- the lightness and speed of a racing yacht, the linearity of a cruise ship, the triangulation of a main sail, and the robustness of a tugboat.

These seafaring forms are contrasted by its masonry materiality, anchoring the building to the site. Like the ever-changing beach, windswept sand will slowly act on the masonry to reveal the aggregate beneath the finished layers.  With each passing season, the built form will remain unchanged as the materials evolve to subtlety reflect the changing conditions the building faces.

The careful articulation of the blockwork and concrete, selected for its weight and malleability, help to achieve these dynamic forms which have a kinetic relationship with each other.  The coastal conditions faced by the building are severe.  The blockwork and concrete finishes were selected for their ability to weather these harsh coastal conditions and be changed by them.

The final configuration was the result of a challenging configuration of the club’s spatial requirements, the brief from council, and a tight site. As the design was developed further, the architectural solution identified required a closer collaboration between the club and the client. Additional design workshops for stakeholders were needed to fine tune the brief to reach a satisfactory outcome with respect to brief, site requirements, ESD and OHS outcomes.

The solution reached sees the public realm at the level of the public road, extending through the centre of the building to provide level access to the beach. Public facilities are split by the concourse from the lifesaving facilities on the other side and on the floor above. Elevating the functional nature above the open public space below also provided shading to the concourse and formalised a sense of arrival at the beach.

The completion of the new facility opened in time for the centenary year of the club, which commenced its operation in 1919.