Gugan Gulwan Aboriginal Youth Centre, ACT

role Stakeholder Engagement, Feasibility and Interior Design

completion date current

client JLL on behalf of Gugan Gulwan Youth Aboriginal Corporation

Gugan Gulwan is a youth centre that supports young Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and their families in the ACT region. The organisation provides a range of programs beyond the services of most community and youth centres including drug, alcohol and mental health programs and child, youth and family support programs. The organisation’s substantial growth over the last few years meant that their current accommodation did not meet their operational needs.

In order to formulate a brief for their new accommodation requirements and anticipate the future needs of the centre, peckvonhartel facilitated a series of user group consultations and stakeholder engagement workshops. The primary aim of the consultation was to provide a set of objectives that would inform the outcome of a feasibility and due diligence study.

peckvonhartel was commended by Gugan Gulwan and ACT government representatives following a series of successful engagement sessions. Our team created an open, transparent and trusting environment for engagement with the Centres’ community representatives. The team captured critical cultural nuances including the need for appropriate spaces for traditional cultural meetings and smoke ceremonies, informing the functional and aspiration requirements for the future.

The community consultation strategy provided a framework for the planning and analysis of potential future sites. Informed by users, this framework enabled peckvonhartel to investigate and validate the option to increase the building envelope and facilities at the current site, and to also explore alternative sites to house the organisation.

We evaluated each site against town planning, parking and traffic requirements, and investigated the structural integrity of each building. To strategically address the Centre’s key demographic, we also evaluated each site based on its proximity to existing and future retail, school and transport hubs.

Overall, these findings formed the basis for Gugan Gulwan and JLL to develop a business case for potential future funding, enabling the organisation to secure accommodation that enhances their ability to deliver this critical service to the community.