District Docklands Entertainment Complex

The new entertainment complex in the District Docklands precinct is a multi-cinema, mixed-use structure on a spatially challenging prawn-figured site. The project, adjacent to Costco and beneath the Melbourne Star Wheel, exists within a nebula of vertical infrastructure, elevated walkways and neighbouring structures.

An important component of the brief was that the project should rejuvenate the existing commercial complex. The challenge became ensuring that a building of this scale, programme and modest budget became transformative within its environment whilst meeting its developer’s ambitions.

Ashe Morgan
The District Docklands
Traditional Country
Wurundjeri/Boon Wurrung
Nick Hubicki

Customisation and prototyping were tested extensively in the preconstruction phase, to ensure that budget and building requirements were both met. The building is also a reference to large-scale customisation.


Along this elevation and curling into its western façade, a series of custom red 210 x 305mm Zincalume triangular folds act as a kind of pleated house curtain, reiterating the building’s function whilst reconnecting it to former cinematic experience: an anticipation of the screening and illusion. Clad entirely in metal, from roof sheeting to panel to extrusion, the building also reflects upon the bricolage of Depression Era metal shelters.